The marriage of Sarah Matthews, daughter of Christine and Brian, who have a house in Tzanes, near Drios and are regular summer visitors to Paros, took place on the island on 16 June 2004.
The groom, Justin O'Connell, son of Michael and Nora O'Connell, is from the same home town as Sarah, Horsham in West Sussex, UK. The marriage was held in the Catholic Church of St Anthony (Aghios Antonios or Franco Monastery) and was officiated by Father Manolis Remondos from Naxos and Father Pavlos Roccas from Tinos. Readings were given by the bride's brother and aunt and by three of Justin's brothers, James, and Geoff and John (joint best men). Matron of Honour was Katherine Bowen from Texas, the bride's cousin, bridesmaid Maria Georghiou, her best friend from Cyprus. The groom's nephews, Jack and Liam were pageboys. In other words almost a traditional British/Irish wedding! Guests came from the USA, Germany, Cyprus the UK and Athens. The reception was held at the "Poseidon of Paros" on a balmy evening under a starlit sky. After their honeymoon on Santorini, the couple returned to their home in Horsham.
Sarah and Justin decided to marry here because of Sarah's previous international life and 15-year association with the island. Also critical to the decision was being able to meet her fianc?'s wish for a Catholic wedding. Starting point for the preparations was Paros Life's "Weddings Special Edition" published in October 1999. The main challenges were with having the legal and religious documentation assembled, translated, authenticated and submitted by courier to the priests in time. As it was a religious wedding, the papers signed during the service had to be taken to the Town Hall the next day for the marriage certificate to be issued.
Everyone was impressed by the facilities on Paros. All the usual services, quality hotels, cars, coaches, photography, video, hairdressing, florists and cake shops are available and are of a high standard and costs are comparable or lower than in other countries. The beauty and ambience of the island create a wonderful atmosphere for a wedding and the selected month, June, meant avoiding the higher temperatures of mid-summer.
Christine and Brian will be happy to advise anyone contemplating a Paros wedding! You can contact them on 22840-42735.