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9 couples to exchange vows on Valentine’s Day at mayor’s office

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TODAY, Valentine’s Day, the Saipan mayor’s office will officiate the wedding ceremonies for nine couples, the mayor’s wedding coordinator Bobbi Yamada said.

Last year, 14 couples, seven of whom were same-sex partners, were married at the mayor’s office.

This year, “the weddings scheduled for Chinese couples have been cancelled,” Yamada said.

Of the nine couples getting married at the mayor’s office on Valentine’s Day, eight will exchange their wedding vows in the morning while the ninth will get married in the afternoon.

Yamada said the rest of the mayor’s staff installed special Valentine’s Day decorations in the mayor’s conference room where the weddings will take place.

“The couples want to get married on Valentine’s Day to make it more special,” Yamada said. “So we want to help make it truly special.”

In a statement, Mayor David M. Apatang said Valentine’s Day is a “very special celebration” that allows people to “express our affection for each other.”

Oftentimes, he added, even “mere expressions of words reaffirm the affection we have for that someone we hold very dear and special in our hearts and minds.”

He said, “Flowers and chocolates bring lots of smiles to the one we adore and dedicate our love and life to.”

On Valentine’s Day, he added, “Each of us must express our love and affection for the ones we hold dear and special, be it our spouse, children, neighbor, or someone who needs a special friend.”

The mayor urged community members to share a hug and say, “I love you.”

“Our world would be better when we share our love with others, and offer prayers for love to those that yearn for it,” he added.

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