Cameron and I decided to be married in the Salt Lake City temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. It is a beautiful building with lots of history, as well as being a place where many of our relatives and ancestors were married. But it is so much more than that.
We chose this temple because it was right outside that I first told Cameron that I loved him, and also the place we were when he kissed me for the first time.
Our families are spread out all over the country, though we both have a lot of extended family in Utah, and we wanted to have the wedding somewhere that would be mildly convenient for everyone. (We realize that, short of having 5 different weddings, it was impossible to make it really convenient for very many people at all, and we so appreciate all the love and support we got from our families, especially those that had to travel to get here!)
We chose to be married in the temple instead of a church or other setting because we believe that here, we could be married not just for this life, but for the rest of eternity as well. A lot of people I know believe that marriage only lasts until death, and that neither our spirits nor our resurrected selves will be connected to our spouse. When we are sealed in the temple, we are promised to be with each other forever.
But there's something even more wonderful than that. We're together with each other, but if we keep doing our best to live the way God wants us to, we can be with our children and ancestors as long as they do the same! We can be with our whole family forever.
For the actual ceremony, we had a lot of family that was unable to come inside to be with us. The temple is a very sacred place, and even lots of members of our church aren't allowed in. To come in to the temple, you must be strictly living the commandments, as well as have made special promises and commitments with the Lord that you will always live that way. These are very serious promises, and so members of the church are encouraged to wait until they are ready to be married or serve a full time mission, or at least are past their teen-age years, before they go to the temple and make those commitments.
It was painful for us to not be able to have some of our family with us for that short time we were inside the temple. We wanted so much to be able to share that with them. But for us, it was an easy choice. For us, leaving them outside for half an hour so that we could have the chance to be with them for the rest of eternity as well as this life was definitely worth it. I know that it's difficult for those not of our faith to understand, but we did it because we love our family and we want to be with them always.
Families are central to God's plan. He means for us to be with our families and to be happy! I know that He loves us and wants the best for us. Sometimes we have to make sacrifices in this life, and it is hard, but the reward will always be worth it. This is why we chose to be married in the temple. We want to be with each other and our family, not just "till death do us part," but through all of forever, even after we die. It is a glorious promise, and I know that God keeps his promises.
We're so grateful that our family was so supportive of us and that so many of you who were unable to come inside still came to the temple to be there when we came out. We love you so much, and hope you can understand why we made the choice that we did. We want to be with you forever.
If you would like to learn more about mormon temples, click here, here, here, or even here!
If you would like the opportunity to go inside a mormon temple, completely "legally" and without any commitment or strings attached, here and here are the next opportunities to do so. (When a new temple is built, it is open to the general public for a short time before it is dedicated. There will be a guided tour of the building and explanations of what the different rooms are used for. You do need tickets, but they are free. You can obtain tickets by following the link above.) If you are unable to attend an open house but still want to learn about the temple, many temples have visitor centers on the same property where you can ask questions about the temples and see the outside and grounds.
And here are some more pictures of our wonderful family at the temple with us, and a few of just Cam and I that I love!