Emotional church rector carries out wedding service... for his own sister!

Stephanie and Chris after the service
Stephanie and Chris after the service
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Conducting wedding services is nothing new for Reverend Gavin Cooper, but when it is your sister who is about to get married keeping the tears out proved rather difficult.

Revd Cooper admitted it was bizarre presiding over the wedding of sister Stephanie Cooper (now Parker) to husband Chris last Saturday, but he said he could have received no greater honour.

Revd Cooper, Stephanie and Chris during the service

Revd Cooper, Stephanie and Chris during the service

“It was wonderful. It was an absolute privilege but bizarre,” he said.

Reverend Cooper is the Rector of The Benefice of St Mary and St Martin in Stamford, but the service was held at St Mary the Virgin in Marholm as that is where his and Stephanie’s parents, grandparents and great grandparents all got married.

And in a wonderful coincidence the wedding took place 50 years to the second that Revd Cooper and Stephanie’s great aunt and uncle tied the know. “The same time, the same day, the same church. You could not plan it better,” he said.

The wedding was also poignant for a second reason.

Revd Cooper added: “Our mother died seven years ago. She was the one person we wanted there and she was the one person who was not there.

“It was very emotional and tears were shared.” Stephanie (34), of Peterborough, said: “It just made it really special having him do it. It was really nice and less nerve-racking for me. It was very emotional and the best day ever.