WEDDINGS
12/07/2012 04:44 pm ET

Washington Gay Marriage: 30 Couples To Wed In Group Ceremony

Same-sex couples across Washington received marriage licenses for the first time on Thursday, and one Seattle church is planning to celebrate in a big way.

Seattle First Baptist Church, which has been performing same-sex commitment ceremonies since 1979, will legally marry 30 same-sex couples in a "group wedding" on Sunday.

Pastor Craig Darling told HuffPost Live he expects 900 guests to attend the ceremony, which will be inclusive of all faiths. Couples will exchange love letters during the ceremony, and two choirs will perform.

"We're very excited that, for instance, Pete-e [Petersen] and Jane [Abbot Lighty, the first same-sex couple to obtain a license in Washington's King County], we performed their covenant ceremony several years ago, and at the time none of us believed this day could be here," Darling said. "It's so exciting to know that they're going to be legally married and affirm the love they have shared for so long."

The Seattle Times reported that counties across Washington are operating under extended hours to accomodate the thousands of couples expected to apply for marriage licenses this weekend. Hundreds of couples will marry in the coming weeks; Seattle City Hall will host 142 ceremonies in its lobby on Sunday.

Watch the video above for more details on Seattle First Baptist Church's group wedding.

Click through the slideshow below to see photos of Washington couples receiving marriage licenses.

PHOTO GALLERY
HuffPost
BEFORE YOU GO
Same-Sex Marriage Licenses Issued in Washington For the First Time
PHOTO GALLERY
Same-Sex Marriage Licenses Issued in Washington For the First Time

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