Meet the world's first CFSM couple to be legally hitched

Meet the world's first CFSM couple to be legally hitched April 18, 2016

Members of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, Pastafarians Toby Ricketts from the UK  and New Zealander Marianna Fenn, made history at the weekend when they were married aboard a pirate ship in New Zealand.
The couple decided on an official Pastafarian wedding after the CFSM received approval to legally conduct marriages in 2015 by the NZ government.
The Church – which was founded to satirise American religious fundamentalism and creationism in particular – believes a god made of spaghetti and meatballs is just as likely as any other deity. According to its website, its only dogma is:

The rejection of dogma.

Ricketts and Fenn have been together for four years. Although they never considered marrying before, when the first Pastafarian marriage celebrant was sanctioned by the New Zealand government they decided that the chance to hold a humorous and original wedding was too good to pass up.
Ricketts, a voice-over artist, has been working on a documentary about religion called God Doesn’t Pay Tax, and was interested in alternative and emerging religions.

Marriage wasn’t on the agenda for us, it wasn’t something we needed as we are already deeply committed to one another.
But when this opportunity came along we thought it would be a fun tool to examine religion, and traditions and practices which are too often taken as a given, as the only way to get married.

The bride and groom wore head-to-toe pirate regalia, and guests donned eye-patches, pirate hats and feathers for the ceremony. Fenn also wore a colander on her head – the official headdress of the church.
During the ceremony, Ricketts and Fenn exchanged rings made of pasta, and in his vows Ricketts promised to always add salt while boiling spaghetti.
Had they been aware of the fact, they might have exchanged more durable silver Flying Spaghetti Monster rings, available online from a Canadian store called Prince of Diamonds, run by Omar Hamid and his family.
Said Fenn:

It was an extremely fun wedding. But it was romantic, too. I felt romantic. It just wasn’t solemn and serious and expensive like so many ceremonies today. A big dress and getting into debt has never appealed to me, but this did.
The total cost of the wedding was NZ$3,000 (£1,460), and the couple supplied the wedding feast – 15kg of tomatoes from their garden, vegetarian meatballs, and plenty of pasta and bread.

Said Ricketts, who was raised a Christian but left the church at 17:

We don’t feel any differently now we are married, we have always been very happy together.
What has been a huge pleasure is showing people that love and commitment don’t have to be delivered in a prescribed way, in a certain church, with sometimes cumbersome traditions and expectations.

The couple are the first to be married by CFSM marriage celebrant Karen Martyn who said she has at least a dozen more weddings lined up this year.
Hat tip: 1859, AgentCormac, Peter Sykes, and Steve H

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  • Laura Roberts

    Oh, man, sounds like a terrific party! People like this give me hope for the future.

  • Broga

    Most encouraging. The pirate theme is brilliant. The sense of fun spills over and none of the religious bullshit, often followed by divorce, about God joining people together. Terrific. Made my day. Good luck to the happy couple.

  • CoastalMaineBird

    This sounded great, until I got to the “vegetarian meatballs” part.

  • Newspaniard

    I shall pray to The Great Spag Bol (in the bag) to forgive them.

  • barriejohn

    Sadly, I have to confirm that the consumption of vegetarian meatballs (if true) renders the entire ceremony invalid. Sorry guys, but all religions have to have rules!

  • Daz

    I’ve got no objection to the existence of vegetarian meatballs; but in the name of all that’s good and true, how can they not be known as vegetaballs‽

  • barriejohn

    Daz: You’re obviously not a True Pastafarian.

  • Daz

    I’m a Lasagnite.

  • barriejohn

    Daz: I am an Eboracumite, myself (worshipper of the Great Yorkshire Pudding). We have lost many to the repulsive Toad in the Hole sect of late, but we were warned that such things would characterize the end times, so we take heart from this!

  • Cali Ron

    I’m wondering what the Pastafarian stance on red sauce versus white sauce might be. I fear that the ball and sauce controversies could cause a potential rift in the CFSM. Will this lead to the Orthodox CFSM and the New CFSM? Can the power of the parmigiana hold them together?
    Remember the pasta and eat it wholly!

  • AndyB

    Priest: “Do you take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?”
    Man: “Arrrrrrrrrrr”

  • Daz

    I think you might well be on the right side of that schism! [YouTube link]

  • barriejohn

    Baz: Brilliant. How did I manage to forget that? By Weston and Lee, who also penned Brahn Boots and With Her Head Tucked Underneath Her Arm (American visitors are going to wonder what the hell we’re on about!). My dad and I loved Stanley Holloway’s monologues – his favourite was Brahn Boots, which he had no difficulty in reciting, as he had a wonderful memory for poetry, and mine was (naturally) The Lion and Albert , which was played regularly on Children’s Favourites back in the ’50s. I bought my dad a copy of the collection in the Oxfam Bookshop one day, and I bet he’s up there now…, of course he’s not. Eee, bah gum, what on earth am I thinking of?

  • barriejohn

    Brahn Boots for those unacquainted with the monologue. A moral tale that religious pedants would do well to take to heart!
    We didn’t know… he didn’t say,
    He’d give ‘is other boots away.
    But some day up at Heavens gate,
    Poor Jim, all nerves, will stand and wait,
    ‘Til an angel whispers… “Come in, Mate!
    Where’s yer brahn boots?”

  • Daz

    And when they’ve had a few they shout Is Arsenal going to win?
    They think it’s Alec James, instead of poor old Ann Boleyn
    With ‘er ‘ead tucked underneath ‘er arm.
    I used to love listening to my granddad doing One Each Apiece All Round. He hit some amazingly low notes on the “We’ve been d-r-i-n-k-I-n-g” lines.
    Another of his favourites was Vivian Foster – The Vicar of Mirth.

  • barriejohn

    Daz: That’s a new one to me, and my dad certainly never mentioned him! A great favourite of his was Joyce Grenfell, and I, of course, loved “George – Don’t Do That”, which again was aired regularly on the wireless. Here, however, is a suitably irreverent monologue for anyone who may be interested:

  • Daz

    My mother says she distinctly remembers Vivian Foster starting a lot of his skits with the line, “My dear sheep, ye who I have fleeced so often,” which would be great if I could find an example, but YouTube fails me on this.
    I’ve got the George Don’t Do That LP in a box somewhere. It’s scratchy as hell though; I might record it to the computer and see if I can clean the audio up a bit.
    On the topic of Ecumenical Bafflegab, though, here’s Alan Bennett.