“Just a Couple of Old People Holding Hands”:
A Memoir of a Marriage in Alzheimer’s World
By Carl R. Smith, Jr.
Edited by William C. Smith
Post Five – “old fashioned things like marriage vows and duty”
“Will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live?”
~ “The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage,”
Episcopal Book of Common Prayer (1979).
Carl Smith and Mary Helen Lawson were married in 1981 at Christ Church Cathedral, the massive Episcopal church in downtown Indianapolis. It was the Lawson family church, where Mary Helen’s first husband served many years as priest, where her children attended Sunday school and her sons sang in the choir, and where daughter Ruth set out on her own career in the Episcopal ministry.
Carl was raised in the Disciples of Christ church, and became a Presbyterian early in his ministry. However, I’m sure the Episcopal wedding vows came as easily to him as to Mary Helen — including the part about loving, comforting and honoring their spouse “in sickness and in health.” Read more here…