A Love Story:
Tarah Nicole King, 31, and Christopher John Keeley, 51, were married at 4:00 p.m. on November 1, 2008 on Merry-Go-Round Rock in Sedona, Arizona. They were married by Shaman Uqualla, the Havasupai Spiritual Emissary.
Tarah and Christopher are licensed social workers who met in Washington, D.C., while working in the Family Court that serves families with abused and neglected children.
Chris's parents, Robert V. and Louise S. Keeley, spent 34 years in the American Foreign Service. His father was the American Ambassador to Mauritius, Zimbabwe and Greece. Tarah is the daughter of Kenneth R. King of Tokyo, Japan, and Mrs. Erin E. King of California.
Mr. Keeley, graduated from the Corcoran School of Art and received a Master's Degree in Social Work from Catholic University.
Mrs. Keeley, who graduated from Columbia University with a Master's of Science degree, is a Supervisory Social Worker/Clinical Manager at Family Preservation Services, Inc. and runs a family stabilization program that treats seriously emotionally disturbed children and adolescents in Washington, D.C. Her father, Kenneth King, is an engineer with the MITRE Corporation and a long-term resident of Japan. Her mother, Erin King, is an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ and currently works in the area of death and dying with hospice.
Mr. Keeley in private practice conducts drug interventions from referrals through his website domain "intervention.org" and from community referrals. He accepts pro bono nearly daily referrals for people seeking help for drug problems or needing treatment. As a consultant, he has consulted on drug policy for government agencies.
Selected exhibits of his photographs on social issues have been shown in: Athens, Greece, Pierides Foundation Museum (1989) - "Addict: Out of the Dark and Into the Light." Washington, D.C., Cannon Rotunda, U.S. Capitol (1990) - "Powerless Homeless." "Bernard Williams Memorial Award for Photography," Corcoran School of Art, Washington, D.C., 1988.
Selected honors and awards have included: a "Management Assistance Grant," D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Washington, D.C., 1991. Social Worker of the Year 2001, Child and Family Services Agency, Washington DC, March 29, 2001.
Washington Post Wedding Announcement
Saturday, November 1, 2008
At 4 O'Clock In The Evening
Merry Go Round Rock
Now you will feel no rain,
For each of you will be shelter to the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
For each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no more loneliness,
For each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two bodies,
But there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling place
To enter into the days of your togetherness
And may your days be good and long upon the earth.
The progression of the ceremony is as follows:
Ceremonial Processional - drumming
Blanket Exchange - formal opening
Ring Blessings/vows - exchanges of rings
Cardinals - blessings facing the 4 directions
Feather Ties- symbolic union
Blessings - announcement of union
I utilize a ceremonial blanket for the union;
KO MAUA LA MALE 'ANA ( Our Wedding Day ) 11.01.2008 The wedding will held at the stunning location of Red Rock Country (Crescent Moon Park) Sedona, Arizona. The ceremony will be conducted by Uqualla Native American Shaman from Havasupai Nation meaning "People-Of-The-Blue-Green-Waters". Uqualla begins the ceremony with invocation to the elements of Mother Earth, Father Sky, and to the East, South, West, and the North winds. A drumming signals celebration. The couple comes forth and the wedding rings are purified through an infusion of sage and prayer. Uqualla blesses the union of husband and wife with an array of ritual gestures. He makes the traditional offering chant and the heart beat of the drum to the four cardinal directions and a final chanting seals the union. We feel that having a Native American wedding ceremony is a unique, powerful, spiritual and moving way to begin our married journey life together. Sedona is also a sacred palace to many Native Americans Nations, which makes Sedona also the perfect place to experience a genuine Native American wedding. We both have always respected the Native American cultures and their beliefs. With our families and close friends by our side supporting our union together, makes the whole experience even more meaningful.
The Blanket Ceremony
Another wedding custom practiced by the Kiowa and several other plains tribes is the blanket ceremony. Two blue blankets are used in the ceremony, with each representing the couple's past lives that may have been filled with loneliness, weakness, failures, sorrow and spiritual depression.
The couple are each wrapped in one of the blue blankets and their relatives follow them to the sacred fire circle. (If the ceremony is indoors, they could approach when you pronounce them husband and wife). After the spiritual leader blesses the union the couple then shed the blue blankets and are enveloped by relatives in a single white blanket representing their new ways of happiness, fulfillment and peace.
Under the white blanket, the couple then embrace and kiss. This is the end of the wedding ceremony.
The white blanket is kept by the couple and often displayed in their home.
The wedding vase has been used by many Indian tribes in America. In tradition, the wedding vase was created prior to the wedding. Many believe as part of the marriage ceremony the medicine man would prepare a special potion [usually water] for the young lovers.
First, the bride drinks from one spout and then, gives it to the groom, who drinks from the opposite spout. The mixture signified the promise of deep love and eternal happiness for the couple.
A shaman is a kind of medicine man who practices shamanism. Shamans were believed to be able to talk to the spirit world, usually animal spirits.
KO MAUA LA MALE 'ANA ( Our Wedding Day ) 11.01.2008