by Rev. Lynn Rogers - InterfaithChaplain.com

I love performing weddings in Puerto Vallarta for so many reasons - our exquisitely beautiful location where the sea meets the mountains, the gorgeous weather, the delightful couples who feel called to celebrate their special day here, and, as it turns out, the warm community of friends who are always ready to make the extra effort.

While many people who choose a destination wedding in Puerto Vallarta work with a wedding planner, Ron and Dianne's plans for an intimate ceremony included a "party of two" and a modest budget that didn't fit into the usual model.

So when they emailed me in search of someone to officiate, they asked, "Can you help with the arrangements as well as perform the ceremony?" I said I'd see what I could do. Next morning, at my favorite coffee shop, I put the question to the gathered locals.

A dear friend, and most excellent photographer, said that since it was a week-day wedding in October, he was available and would love to work with me. Another angel offered to do the flowers. Others knew of boats for rent and soon the pieces fell into place.

Over the next month or so, the bride, groom and I spoke and emailed, and together created a personal ceremony that would truly reflect their feelings, language and wishes for their dream wedding.

Several weeks before the special day, photographer Josef Kandoll and I checked out their hotel, found the perfect beach location for the ceremony, and scouted the best photo ops along the route we will take to get there. We planned the food and special surprise treats and chose a cake. We met with the captain of the boat who will take couple sailing off for a private sunset cruise, and he happily volunteered to do everything possible to assure a perfect few hours on board.

What a delightful day for me, and, with the support of so many wonderful people, I know this couple will enjoy the Puerto Vallarta wedding of their dreams. And while the celebration will be just for the two of them, alone on the beach and sailing away, a community of love, support and friendship will anchor their special day... behind the scenes.

Update: Since this article was published, Ron and Dianne did indeed have the wedding of their dreams. Here's what they had to say:

You went above and beyond to make our wedding off the charts wonderful!! The extra touches – the bouquet, the cake, the wonderful basket of goodies!!  And then, when we returned to our room, you had thoughtfully done the rose petals and chocolates!!

We were talking how we are both minimalists and would have been great without the touches, but how much more romantic and endearing you made this experience. Thank you for adding the flare, class and beauty that both of us would have missed!! We didn’t realize how different it could have been! And we are appreciative beyond words!!

 Thank you again for such a fabulous and unforgettable experience!

(photo by Josef Kandoll)