Catherine & Luis – Downtown New Bedford, MA

two people embracing in the middle of a traditional new england fishing dock. its a grey cloudy day, they are smiling. one is in a wedding dress. the other in a suit.

It all started in the basement…

… of a local community church, across the street from one the Catherine and Luis actually end up marrying in. But this time, It’s July 2013 and Catherine was presenting in the basement of the church with a colleague, Andrea at a community hearing. They were introducing their proposal to bring dual language learning into New Bedford Elementary Schools, when Catherine saw Luis in the audience. Even during this super important presentation, she had a few seconds to think to herself “Oh, he is handsome!”.

Little did Catherine know… Andrea knew him! Later during the mingling with school board and other community members, Andrea introduced them. Luis was in the middle of sharing his volunteer work with the newly passed DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). Luis shared his experience as a “Dreamer” to help other students throughout Massachusetts, and encourage them to apply to colleges. Catherine found Luis’s backstory completely entrancing, and was immediately drawn to his resilience.

… And as they say, the rest is history.

Until it isn’t.

Fast forward a few years to 2017, and a new presidential term. A president who’s policy changes could directly threaten Catherine & Luis’s way of life. I can’t begin to imagine how this might feel. Since so many of us can’t, Luis took the time to tell Time Magazine in 2017

“I’ve been calling and they’re saying it’s fine, but it might not be fine.
When I talk to the person there, it’s another Tuesday for them, but for me it’s like, am I going to lose everything?”

— It’s at times like this where I’m sure Catherine’s “kindness and strength” help the two of them continue towards happier times like May 2018… when these two finally got married!

“Papers don’t define me”

That’s a quote from Luis, from when I was getting to know him. To some, marriage may be about legalities, paperwork, and representation. Luis has already let us know what that little piece of paper says about his and Catherine’s relationship. No paper will ever dictate anything about their love, and the new family they have created.

New Bedford as Inspiration…

While learning all about their relationship and their volunteer work, it was completely obvious to me why these two chose Downtown New Bedford as their formal image location. New Bedford is perfect for pictures because of all its hidden architectural nooks and crannies. Not only do you get a Historical National Park, and a beautiful working waterfront within blocks of each other, there are also beautiful art installations throughout the entire city. It’s also full of people who love our little city just as much as Luis & Catherine.