Guests at the Bogen-Nicholson wedding in June will have an interesting tidbit when they describe the couple’s big day: The bride and groom served peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
Duluth native Leah Bogen and fiance Will Nicholson were eating breakfast and chatting about wedding plans on Sunday morning in their Maple Grove home. At the same time, Bogen was reading the newspaper and was struck by a story from Haiti that included leg amputations and unsafe medical conditions.
The contrast of the earthquake devastation and the party planning struck her.
She made a decision right then and there to donate the money they planned to spend on the reception dinner — 25 percent of their wedding budget — to people in Haiti. Her fiance didn’t need any convincing.
“She totally blew me away,” said Nicholson, a University of Minnesota Duluth graduate. “I’m still in awe. I was very impressed. How do you say anything but yes to that? It’s such a selfless and thoughtful thing. It’s hard to get excited about planning a wedding when other people are having such a terrible time.
“We’ve got friends and family who are happy and healthy and nearby and well-fed. My family doesn’t need another fancy meal.”
Do I have enough mindfulness within me to give up the things that I don’t really need so that someone else might have the basics?
Do I care enough about those who go without that I am willing to do the same in solidarity?
Can I love those who need so much more than my love?
Today be moved by this couple and their commitment not only to each other, but to the poor on their wedding day.