They lined up around the block for the wedding luncheon, but if you asked them if they knew the bride or the groom, there was a good chance they’d answer, “Neither.”
Utah couple Mariah Genck and Tanner Larsen held their wedding luncheon on Friday, ahead of their Saturday wedding, but unlike most nuptial celebrations, the Larsen-Genck wedding luncheon was not just about the couple getting married.
“When I don’t focus on myself, when I focus on others, I can touch a lot more hearts than just my own heart,” Genck told KSL-TV.
The couple opened their wedding luncheon to Salt Lake City’s homeless, providing a hearty meal to those in need.
Larsen’s mother, Elisa Vuyk, shared some of the thoughts that went into the unorthodox wedding event.
“Someone said to me, ‘You’re going to go from such a sacred wedding to feeding the homeless?’” Vuyk recalled. ”I said, ‘That’s it. Because this is so sacred. This is a sacred thing, and [Larsen and Genck] go feed the homeless every week.’”
Larsen, 22, and Genck, 19, have only been dating for four months, KSL-TV reported, and their first date was at a soup kitchen where they served meals and washed dishes.
They now regularly serve meals to the homeless.
His fiancee’s example of service has inspired him, Larsen told KSL-TV.
“She kind of awoke in me, kind of my dreams and aspirations again,” Larsen said.
Genck and Larsen’s wedding was scheduled for Saturday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Bountiful Temple.
Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter