Family Affair

Sunday morning, we walked to church with Jörg and Tobias.

Heike, Christopher and Dorothea had gone on ahead because they were all involved in the ceremony. Heike is the choir director and Christopher, in addition to playing in the church band, was playing a solo on his piccolo trumpet.

Schönaich Laurentiuskirke

Dorothea, of course, was the star of the show, so pretty all dressed up.

Dorothea, bottom right

We tried to sing hymns along with the congregation and the kids were a great help, pointing out the pages and verses, but it was a challenge keeping up in German. The format of the service was very much like what we recalled from the Presbyterian church we attended in Miami Shores and I was able to recognize the Lord's Prayer and the Apostles' Creed and even understood a little bit of the sermon.

The pastor called the boys and girls to the altar in pairs to bless them and welcome them into the church family.

Dorothea on far right

After the service, we went straight back to the house for a couple photos.

Jörg photographing Dorothea and friends

We had a pleasant surprise when another third cousin, Andreas, arrived from Lake Constance with his family. Andreas visited us in Florida; I think it was in 2005.

Andreas and his wife, Melanie, with their two girls

We also got to visit with Heike's parents, Hans-Jürgen and Ingeborg, again before the house filled up with guests. We met and hiked with Hansi and Ingeborg (and their other daughter, Kirsten) in Colorado in 2003 at another cousin's (Erich) wedding in Denver that summer.

Hans-Jürgen, second from left, and Ingeborg

After all the guests and family had arrived, Jörg made a celebratory toast to Dorothea and everyone had a chance to mingle before we all headed for the Sulzbachtal Restaurant a couple miles away for a feast!

Here we are at the restaurant: that's Heike's younger sister, Kirsten, seated next to Dorothea; Kirsten, another third cousin of mine, visited us in Florida a couple years ago, too.

Counter-clockwise from right: Dorothea, Kirsten, Heike, Jörg, Tobias

It was a big, family affair. The entire banquet room was filled with Ulmers and Langners and their relations.

And just when I thought I'd eaten as much as my stomach could hold, it was announced that ten cakes had been prepared for desert!

Left to right: Ingeborg, Heike, Kirsten

I made a great sacrifice and had two pieces.


3 thoughts on “Family Affair

  1. Mark — What a wonderful thing that you have that connection with your family from way back when. I’ve been digging up info about my dad’s (Armstrong) family, too. I always heard they were from Scotland but now I’ve come upon a German connection, too. When Bill was in Czechoslovakia he tried to find the Holub connection there but was told that name is like Smith here in the U.S. (If you go there you’ll find Holubova, etc. on many street corners, railway stations, etc. Also, the church were his family were married&buried is no more, and none of the documents were kept. My mother’s (Morgan) family goes back to the beginnings of the USA — including the Alamo — so that’s been fun, but no live connections afar from either side. What about Dale’s ancestors? Hope you have info on them, too. —B&B >

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