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The Anonymous Officiant: And Then The Fire Broke Out…

Published Monday, Feb. 27th, 2023

This candlelit wedding ceremony took an unexpected turn...



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AMM Audio Articles · The Anonymous Officiant : And Then The Fire Broke Out…




"I was officiating in a 19th-century church repurposed as a wedding chapel...


Several steps led to a raised stage / altar area where the ceremony was to take place.


It looked lovely that day, with all the stained glass and ancient wood, and with lighted candles lining the steps.


The groom’s party and I took our places up front and the bridal party entered, wearing dresses with sweeping skirts.


 All went well… until we smelled smoke and noticed that a bridesmaid’s dress had caught fire after brushing a candle on the way up!

Illustration by Jessica Levey, with a blue background and stylized drawing of a bride and guest watching with worry as a bridesmaid's dress catches on fire after brushing up against a candle

Illustrations : Jessica Levey



Fortunately, an alert guest stepped up right away and smothered the flames.


We gasped, then chuckled and continued.


The bride took her place looking lovely, with yards of lace heaped at her feet. Before her maid of honor could start to arrange it all, the groom’s son stepped forward. He was a sweet teenager with developmental challenges, and he adored his new mom.


The kid was fascinated by her dress, and clearly enjoyed moving all that lace around on the floor. Everyone watched, surprised by this unexpected act but charmed by the lad and his impulsive efforts to help.


After a few moments he finished arranging the lace and sat down.


Ready to move ahead with the ceremony, I looked at the guests and quipped, “Every boy loves a train…”


From that point, the ceremony followed our script."


- Anonymous 






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Are you the next Anonymous Officiant?


Tell your real wedding story in AMM’s The Anonymous Officiant


Hey, Wedding Officiants! Share your real wedding story, rant, or advice anonymously in The Anonymous Officiant.  


We’re accepting submissions of true stories, confessions, rants, and other revelations from the wild world of officiating. Do you have a secret, a cautionary tale, a wedding day disaster story, or exciting gossip? A true tale that's funny, heartwarming, scandalous, surprising, or informative? Something you want to confess, or get off your chest? 


Your secret’s safe with us! Submit a story or advice in 500 words or less to [email protected] or use the anonymous submission form linked below. 


Read our Submission Guidelines



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