Marriage Proposal at HOPE Church

When I proposed to my fiancé, Sarah, I wanted to include her nephew Camden, who she adores. On a chilly day last fall, we shot this video of Camden telling the love story of Sarah and me. The only problem was, he couldn't say a lot of words at this point, so we had his mom (Sarah's sister) read lines that he repeated. What he couldn't say, we subtitled. The night that I proposed, I told Sarah that were going to my parents' house for a big family dinner, but I had to make a quick stop at the church (where I work). We entered the quiet, dark church only to find AJ, the creative director (he also shot and edited the video). AJ explained his reason for being there was that he was getting a "newcomers" video ready for the weekend and asked us if we would like to see it. We agreed and AJ dimmed the lights and played this video. Sarah was thrown off because it does in fact, look like a video that would play at HOPE. As we watched, she recognized Camden but was still confused. I held her hand and smiled and just let the video play. She eventually caught on, began to cry and lean on my shoulder. What Sarah did not know what was that my parents, her parents, the rest of our families and friends were hiding in the prayer room just off the sanctuary. As the video played, they slipped out to watch the whole proposal unfold. When the video ended, I took Sarah onto the platform of the stage. The words "Sarah, will you marry me" appeared on the scrim with soft lighting. I could barely get the words out, but I said something nonsensical, got on on one knee and pulled out the ring. It was an honor to ask her to marry me at our church and to have our families, friends and several church staffers there. With tears in her eyes, she said "yes" and our families made their way to the stage. After many moments of hugging and embracing, we made our way out to the concourse where Jennifer, a close friend, had set up an after party with snacks, cake and my personal favorite, Moon Pies. Special thanks to AJ Roberts for producing and editing the video, Kristina Kerns for photographing the proposal, Jennifer Mitchell for the after party, and Camden for starring in the video. I asked Sarah to marry me on November 23, 2012 at HOPE Church in Richmond, VA. We will celebrate our wedding on September 28, 2013 at Farvue, along the James River in Richmond, VA.