"To have and to hold from this day forward, for better or worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish to death do us part."
- Book of Common Prayer
A brief kiss but filled with longing sealed the wedding vows of Valenzuela Councilor Shalani Soledad and Pasig City Rep. Roman Romulo are married in simple and solemn rites at St. Benedict Church at the Ayala Westgrove in Silang Cavite, Sunday, January 22, 2012.
“I’m very happy that I’ve found you,” Romulo, 44, said during the ceremonial exchange of vows.
“I promise to love you from now on until forever,” Soledad, 31, replied.
Soledad wore a Kate Middleton-inspired off-white romantic gown with a lace bodice, skirt made of 17 layers of soft tulle and off-shoulder neckline with tiny cap sleeves. The bride’s face was shrouded in a thin layer of tulle. The look was simple yet elegant, calling to mind Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton’s lacey wedding gown when she married Prince William of Britain. Shalani chose to show off her arms instead of covering the. Designer Inno Sotto created the simple, feminine and elegant gown for Shalani Soledad.
Shalani wore a pair of shoes by Lila Almario.
Romulo wore a midnight-blue tuxedo, a white shirt and a gray bow tie by Hugo Boss and a pair of black leather shoes by Louis Vuitton.
The 22 principal sponsors came from the business and political sectors. The Mass lasted over an hour. The 500-seat church was full-packed.
The bride’s mother, Evelyn Soledad Yumol, and uncle Mon Soledad, who looked after the young Shalani while her mother worked overseas, gave the bride away. The bride met her real father only last year.
Soledad was born out of wedlock to banker and businessman Adolfo Aguirre and Evelyn San Ramon, a flight attendant. While her mother worked, the young Soledad grew up with her grandparents, aunt and uncles. Her mother never brought up the subject of her biological father, whom Soledad met only after 30 years.
The wedding invitation, made from an off-white paper material, had an embossed “RS” insignia, which stood for the couple’s initials.
After waiting for Soledad for 20 minutes, the guests at the church heaved a collective gasp at the sight of the resplendent bride emerging before them for her march.
The simple and solemn wedding ceremony, began at 5:45 p.m.
Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara, Rev. Msgr. Bartolome Santos Jr. and Rev. Fr. Isagani Avinante officiated the wedding mass.
The wedding that took months to prepare was soon over. Cardinal Rosales commanded the groom, in jest, to “now take over.” Roman gladly did and planted a kiss on the bride’s waiting lips.
Roman Romulo, son of former Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo and Rosie Lovely Tecson-Romulo, arrived at 5:15 p.m. Soledad came minutes later in a white S-Class Mercedes-Benz.
The principal sponsors were:
Romulo’s best friend, J. Antonio Cabangon, was the best man while Joy Marie Castellvi was the matron of honor.
- Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario and Gretchen del Rosario
- PLDT-Smart-TV 5 chair Manuel V. Pangilinan and Norma Ona
- Sen. Panfilo Lacson and Corazon Ong
- Emilio Yap and former Las Piñas Rep. Cynthia Villar
- Ambassador Antonio Cabangon-Chua and Betty Chua
- San Miguel Corp. president Ramon Ang and Bettina Aboitiz
- Roberto del Rosario and Elizabeth Gan-Go
- James Sy Gaisano and Lily Lee
- Felix Tuikinhoy Jr. and Maria Jessica Bautista
- Manuel Dy and Natividad Cheng
- Bench founder Ben Chan and Janet Napoles.
Romulo’s groomsmen were his brother Erwin, Davao del Norte Rep. Antonio Lagdameo, Ilocos Norte Rep. Rodolfo Fariñas, George Rafael Lorenzana and Dante Soliven.