Cranes by the Sea: Jono & Laura’s Wedding

Congratulations to Jono and Laura and their families for an absolutely stunning wedding characterised by beautiful simplicity.

My personal highlights included:

  • The beach setting
  • The paper crane blessings on a driftwood arch
  • The theme elements flowing through to the table centres ( obtained by extensive op-shopping!) at the reception in an open field.
  • The heat, aroma’s and ooh’s and ahh’s from a great circle of guests at the raising of the hangi and the round of thankful applause during the speeches for the two sheep from the family property who became the feast.

The conditions were such that it was impossible to take a bad photo and there are some beautiful ones posted here.  Some of these images will make my favourite wedding images page for sure!

The Ceremony

Background Music: Sammy on Guitar

Bridal party up front.


The entrance:

Laura and Father by Boat:  Groomsmen to assist (or by Beach as it turned out… a bit choppy!)

Sammy plays guitar:


My name is Marcus Curnow, I am a Convenor within the Seeds Network, an expression of church community which has emerged out of the life of Urban Seed through through which we have worked with Jono at Norlane in Geelong and seen both him and Laura form and grow through their participation in Forge, Year in the Son, Praxis. It’s an honour for me to join with you their families and friends as they take this next step in their journey.


Acknowledgement of Country

At the beginning of this ceremony Laura and Jon wish to acknowledge the Yowenjerrie of the Bunurong as traditional custodians of this place. Marriage creates an economy of love, food, work and sex which reminds us our lives are deeply connected and dependent upon the land and its processes. Marriage connects family and the generations. Through their own cultural traditions, the Boon Wurrung, Bunurong and Gunai – Kurnai identify this Coastal Park as their Traditional Country through which they have honoured these connections since time immemorial.  And so we begin this ceremony by acknowledging their elders past and present and any other First Australian’s who may be here with us today. May the promises made here today be work for reconciliation between people, Creator God, and the land upon which we stand.

The Meaning of Marriage:

We have come together in the presence of God to witness the marriage of Laura and Jon and to bless them as we share in their joy.

For Jono and Laura marriage is a symbol that unending love is central to the universe, a gift of the creator who demonstrated this mystery to us through the self giving life of Jesus Christ.

They believe this love has called them to connect and commit them selves in marriage.

The scripture’s teach that marriage is a lifelong covenant, a mystery of two becoming as one in heart, mind and body.

In the joy and struggle of their union, husband and wife grow in intimate love as they journey toward the ultimate love.

Through this bond a new sense of identity and home is formed, a place of secure and loving care where children may be born and raised and from which good work can be undertaken to serve society and the natural world.

Marriage is therefore to be honoured by all.

No one should enter it lightly or selfishly, but responsibly and joyfully, with mutual respect and the promise to be faithful.


Further Welcome/ Confession

Weddings are not just about couples but families, communites and the promises that connect us all.  Lots of preparation, travel, work, busyness…Lots of  family and friends from Warrnambool and Geelong.

Today Jono and Laura want us to be aware of our emotions. What it is that each of us feel and bring to this place of celebration today.

Perhaps goodwill, a sense of connection with these two and their communities, excited hopes for them, a desire relax, rejoice and celebrate and enjoy this couple.

Or perhaps feelings that are more difficult. Weddings can raise fears and expectations, painful memories of people who have died or of people who are not here, reminders of relationships that have failed or that remain un-reconciled.

Whatever we feel, whatever the state of relationships, let us join with Laura and Jon in a moments silence. To become aware of our feelings and our surroundings. To let your senses consider and enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of this beautiful space.  Gods cathedral. To respect the connections that we share, create and deepen in this place today.

Silence followed by


Prayer: Marcus

Gracious God

We thank you for your many gifts of love, for marriage and for Jono and Laura.

We thank you for your guidance in bringing them together, for the joy they find in each other and the trust they bring to the happiness of this day.

In Christ you have brought us once again into communion with yourself.

Whatever feelings we bring, may this occasion of covenant and union be witness to that reconciliation by which we now live as people healed and forgiven.

Not simply their promises, or ours, but the promises and fidelity that you offer us all.

Enrich Jono and Laura with your gracious hospitality,

Grant that your joy will be in them and their joy may be full

In the name of Christ.



Reading: Anam Cara by Josh, Genesis 1


Reflection: Aaron Krivan


Declaration of Intent: Marcus

Laura and Jono,

Having heard the nature of love and the call to live your life in this way. Of your own free will, understanding the responsibility and commitment it invites, will you choose to belong to each other in the vocation of marriage?
We will

To Family: who stand…

David and Sheryl,  Paul and Kerry You have raised Jono and Laura through the love and support of your own marriages and relationships.  Simon, Grace and Zac, Tia, Sarah, Sam, Josh. you have grown up alongside them.  Having heard their intentions, will you bless this marriage and supportively share in its joys and challenges as they embark on this journey together?
[We will]

David and Sheryl:   We offer you this gift as a symbol of our family…(explain gift)…  It represents our welcome and blessing. (place gift on small, central table)

Paul and Kerry:  We offer you this gift as a symbol of our family… (explain gift)… It represents our welcome and blessing. (place gift on small, central table)

To Friends:

Friends and other family, you are witnesses to these vows and have an integral role to play in Laura and Jono’s wellbeing. Will you be their community of faith, hope and love, will you encourage and support them in their personal lives and union together?
[We will]

Promises and Symbols


Laura & Jono’s Vows:

I, Jono/Laura promise to love and cherish you, care for you and put your needs above my own.

I love you with all my being and commit to choosing to love you every day for the rest of my life .

You are my treasure, chosen above all others, and I promise I will always stay true to you.

Regardless of what comes our way I promise to faithfully journey with you through all seasons, the joyous and the sad, the peaceful and the hard.

I will listen to you, comfort you and laugh with you, always treating you with care and respect. I will always believe in you, support you and serve you, following the example of our servant God.

I will always seek to bring the best out in you and to never take you for granted

I covenant my life to yours, to journey with you on this great adventure as we follow the call of our creator.

I love you for you, both now and forevermore.

This is my vow and promise.


Keira and Leila – ring for Jono (bring to Laura)

Xander and Charlotte – ring for Laura (bring to Jono)

Marcus: (Holding rings aloft.) In a world in which we often find it difficult to make and keep our promises, a ring is an unbroken circle, a reminder that each of us are encircled within the faithful promise of the love of God, The fidelity of the Trinity, which, in the midst of brokenness creates and sustains us and the life that we share.

I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and faithfulness to you.

Giving of Gifts:

(Each take gifts from Bridal party.)

Jono I give you this Lock and Key…

Laura I give you this Compass…

(then exchange gifts, then walk together and place on small, central table together)


Pronouncement: Marcus

Jono and Laura in accord with the laws of this land, in the presence of God and your community of family and friends, you have sworn solemn vows, given rings and symbolic gifts. In the name of the God of Sarah and of Abraham, of the Son, born of Mary, and the Spirit, who broods over us and this place like a mother, as she did at creation.   I pronounce you to be husband and wife.

Kiss: Laura, You may kiss the groom.

Song: Amazing Grace  led by the Bridal Party women.


Paper Crane Blessing:

In nature the Crane is a majestic, graceful, waterbird known for its fidelity and loyalty to its life long mate.

The ancient Japanese practice of a man and woman folding 1,000 cranes for their wedding is called sembazuru. The tradition itself is called Tsuru wa sennen. The time and energy put into the thousand hand-folded origami cranes symbolized the patience and trust necessary to sustain a happy marriage. A couple who could weather the long, time intensive folding process together, supporting each other, talking with each other while taking on a challenging task was proving their ability to maintain a long term, content relationship.  The cranes remain a household symbol for the couple and friends of the significance of this day.

As your response to the promises that have been made here today, you are invited to bring the paper crane that you were given at the start of the ceremony and to hang it upon the arch above Laura and Jono.  As you do so you may wish to whisper a word of hope or blessing to them as they stand under the arch and we surround them with our prayers.


Final Blessing/ Seeds Benediction : Marcus

You are God’s Servants, gifted with dreams and visions, upon you rests the grace of God like flames of fire.  Love and serve the Lord in the strength of the Spirit.  May the deep peace of Christ be with you, the strong arms of God sustain you and the power of the Holy Spirit strenghten you in every way. Amen   by Dianne Karray Tripp


Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you Jono and Laura Dredge.

Recessional: Luke Whatman rocks out…  oh yes he did!

I’ll post more pics below on this post in coming days…stay tuned…


3 Replies to “Cranes by the Sea: Jono & Laura’s Wedding”

  1. It was a great day in so many ways, and a privilege to be a guest at Jono and Laura’s wedding. I have known Laura since her earliest years and Jono more recently. So much was communicated in their wedding celebration. The whole day was and will be cherished by many.
    Couldn’t be happier for them both.

  2. What a beautiful thing to do Marcus…thanks for all you did to make the ceremony sooo special… your were just lovely… the wedding was a really joyous celebration wasn’t it? C :

  3. The thing that stood out about Laura and Jono’s wedding was that it was a complete reflection of who they are. Centered on Christ, but created so uniquely, and complimenting one another so completely, they represent a team that is true to the word. I love that they are so outward focused, thinking first of others, which was represented in the entire ceremony, but still wholly loving one another so completely.
    Such an incredible wedding.
    Thanks for your reflection

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