65 couples exchange vows in CDO mass wedding

CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 21 January) — Nico Daayata, 64 and his bride, Crestina Aceron, 58, are among 65 happy couples who exchanged vows in  a heartwarming mass wedding ceremony in Barangay Mambuaya, a village 24 kilometers from the city.

Emotions ran high as Mayor Rolando Uy officiated the wedding for the couples who all came dressed formally, accompanied by their families.

“Maybe it was love at first sight. We just met a couple of months ago,” Aceron said.

Nico Daayata, 64 and Crestina Aeceron, 58, await the start of the mass wedding ceremony in Barangay Mambuaya, Cagayan de Oro City on Saturday, January 21, 2023. MindaNews photo by FROILAN GALLARDO

Daayata said his first wife died in August last year. By the time he met Crestina in November, he said he thought it was time to move on.

Aceron lost her first husband to cancer and had been a widow for a year. 

“Our children were already old and they did not pose any objections to our marriage,” she said.

Daayata and Aceron won the P5,000 prize money for the longest kiss contest among the couples.

All of the couples went home with a lechon, bag of groceries, ten-kilo bag of rice, cake and P5,000 assistance from the City Government. 

A newly-wed couple poses for a souvenir photo with their children during the mass wedding of 65 couples in Barangay Mambuaya, Cagayan de Oro City on Saturday, January 21, 2023. MindaNews photo by FROILAN GALLARDO

Mayor Uy said he supports the mass wedding program because families are the foundation of a stable society.

“A good family becomes productive unlike broken homes,” said Uy who supported the program after he was elected chair of Barangay Carmen in early 2000.

Evangeline Tapangan, City Civil Registrar said more than 400 couples have been wed in seven barangays since Uy assumed as city mayor on June 30 last year. 

“The oldest couple we have is a 70 year old couple in barangay Gusa,” Tapangan said.

She said all the couples submitted documents required by the new Family Code of the Philippines and Civil Registry Law before they were wed. (Froilan Gallardo / MindaNews)