Sunday, January 3, 2010

The (newly equal) state of marriage in New Hampshire

Less than 48 hours after gays and lesbians began to legally marry in New Hampshire, state Rep. Bob Thompson [D-Manchester] and Michael Jacobsen tied the knot at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Manchester.

House Speaker Terie Norelli [D-Portsmouth] was among the dozens of people who braved blowing snow and increasingly treacherous roads to see Thompson and Jacobsen exchange vows.

"I was tearing up," she said at a reception at the Club Canadian on the city's West Side. "[I thought about] how proud I am to preside over a legislature that did the right thing."

New Hampshire lawmakers approved a bill last spring that allowed gays and lesbians to marry. Governor John Lynch signed it into law in June. And the Granite State is now the fifth state to allow marriage for same-sex couples.

As a native Granite Stater who grew up in the Queen City, I honestly never thought I would see the day a gay couple could legally marry in my hometown. I teared up inside the church last night as Bob and Michael exchanged vows and the Rev. David C. Boyer proudly proclaimed them married "under the authority invested in me by the state of New Hampshire." Their wedding was truly something to cherish. And I am thankful lawmakers in my home state stood up and did the right thing to allow committed and loving couples to enjoy the same recognition others in New Hampshire are able to enjoy through marriage.

The Rev. David C. Boyer presided over the wedding inside the Unitarian Universalist Church in Manchester.

Bob and Michael exchange their vows.

Paul and I inside the church.

The wedding cake.

The newlyweds cut their wedding cake.

Couples from across the Granite State dance in salute of Bob and Michael.

An arguably appropriate message inside Club Canadian.

Some of Bob and Michael's family and friends inside Club Canadian.

State Rep. Patrick Long [D-Manchester] wows wedding guests with some karaoke.

Leaving the Queen City late last night.

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