Mrs. William Bennett Heinen
Hensgens, Heinen exchange wedding vows
In a beautiful wedding ceremony on Friday, May 31, at seven o’clock in the evening, Miss Christina Margaret Hensgens and Mr. William Bennett Heinen exchanged sacred marriage vows before the altar of St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church.
The Reverend Andrew Philip Schumacher was the celebrant of the Nuptial Mass and officiated during the wedding service of the church. Also present in the sanctuary and concelebrating the mass were Revs. Brent L. Smith and William M. Miller.
The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Joseph Hensgens Sr. of Crowley. She is the granddaughter of Mr. Braxton I. Moody III of Crowley and the late Mrs. Thelma Hebert Moody and the late Mr. and Mrs. Charles Nicholas Hensgens Sr.
The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Dave Jarrett Heinen of Hathaway. He is the grandson of Mrs. Patricia Habetz Augustine of Fenton and the late Mr. Bennett William Augustine and the late Mr. and Mrs. Walter William Heinen.
Readers of sacred scripture were Mrs. Cynthia Augustine Broussard, aunt and godmother of the groom, who read Sirach 26: 1-4, 13-16. Mr. Stephen Michael Moody Sr., uncle and godfather of the bride, read Colossians 3: 12-17. The Prayers of the Faithful were read by Mr. Thomas Henry Schumacher, friend of the couple and brother of Rev. Schumacher. Miss Carlie Elizabeth Lormand, friend of the bride, greeted the guests with wedding programs.
The solemn beauty of the service was enhanced with a lovely program of traditional nuptial music. Alberta Hensgens Lyons, organist of St. Michael Church, assembled the mixed choir of the church as well as vocalists Jodi Bollich, Dave Domingue and Raymond Hebert. The musicians were Kevin Martin, organist, Hunter Lambert, violinist, and Neil Simon, trumpeter. The beautifully-arranged selections sung by the choir before the Mass began were “On This Day O Beautiful Mother,” “Be Thou My Vision” and “J’irai La Voi Un Jour,” which was sung in memory of Thelma “Te” Moody, grandmother of the bride. Other selections included “Maria Zu Lieben,” Doppelbauer; “O God Beyond All Praising,” Perry; “Trumpet Voluntary,” Clarke; “The Name of God,” Haas; “Panis Angelicus,” Frank; “The Servant Song,” Haas; “Ave Maria,” Parkinson; and “Rondeau,” Mouret.
Complementing the timeless beauty of St. Michael Church and signifying the occasion of marriage was the placement of floral bouquets of white hydrangeas and cascading eucalyptus tied with ivory satin ribbons to the pews of the main aisle. Stately, large arrangements of garden flowers in various shades of white and cream were noted in French urns on either side of the tabernacle. Of special meaning was an antique wooden and gold crucifix placed on the altar. It was a wedding gift to the maternal great-grandparents of the groom, Mr. and Mrs. Pirmim Habetz. Also on the altar were stalks of rice placed in memory of William Moody Hensgens, brother of the bride. A small statue of the Blessed Mother was left at the Shrine of Mary by Mrs. Charlotte Moody Leonards, aunt of the bride, as a gift and blessed remembrance of the Nuptial Mass.
As the long-awaited time of the wedding approached, the mother of the bride was escorted into the church by her son, Michael Charles Hensgens. The groom escorted his mother, accompanied by his father. The grandmother of the groom was escorted by her grandson, John Gordy Broussard IV. They were seated in their family pews as the beautiful “Maria Zu Lieben” was sung in German.
In the traditional gesture of honor, guests rose from their seats as the strains of “Trumpet Voluntary” filled the church, signaling the entrance of the bride. The doors of the church were opened revealing the lovely silhouette of the young bride softly draped beneath her wedding veil. Mr. Hensgens lovingly escorted his youngest daughter in slow procession to the main altar of the church. Upon reaching the steps of the sanctuary, in an endearing custom, he lifted her veil and presented her to the groom.
For her wedding day the bride chose a beautiful gown of duchess silk satin in ivory. A sweetheart neckline framed the strapless bodice in delicate simplicity. The fitted design of the dress, accenting the elegant silhouette of the formal gown, continued to a defining, flared hemline and chapel length train. She wore an exquisite veil of silk illusion in fingertip and cathedral length, notably edged in a continuous border of Alençon lace. The bride wore diamond earrings and a dainty gold and diamond necklace.
In keeping with bridal tradition, she wore her mother’s wedding band as something old and her dress as something new. She carried her late brother’s rosary as something borrowed, and a lace garter as something blue.
To further compliment her gown, the bride carried a garden and gather style bouquet of Playa Blanca, Quicksand and Polar Star roses, white ranunculus, dusty miller, blue thistle, spirea, white peonies, nandina, white Hypericum berries and silver dollar eucalyptus. The beautifully arranged bouquet was hand-tied with ivory satin ribbon. She placed within her bouquet the rosary that belonged to her brother, William M. Hensgens, in his loving memory.
Mrs. Mary Gayle Hensgens Anzalone, sister of the bride, served as her honor attendant. She was escorted into the church wearing a lovely two-piece gown of oyster white crepe. From the jewel neckline, the sleeveless top fell to the waist of the skirt in double tiers of the crepe fabric. The full skirt was a flowing A-line design of formal length. The maids in attendance to the bride were presented in identical gowns.
The bridesmaids were Gretta Hensgens Trahan and Valerie Hensgens Lyons, sisters of the bride, Grace Marie Hensgens and Eleanor Claire Hensgens, nieces of the bride, and Olivia Joseph Hensgens and Heidi Bourgeois Hensgens, sisters-in-law of the bride. They carried hand-tied bouquets of the bridal flowers and greenery.
Immediately preceding the bride were the youngest members of the wedding party. Miss Valerie Ann Lyons, Miss Emily Grace Trahan and Miss Katherine Frances Hensgens, nieces of the bride, served as flower girls. Miss Lyons wore her First Communion dress. The ivory lace collar and puff sleeves edged in lace formed the bodice of the dress. The tea length skirt was beautifully sewn with repeating rows of tucks and lace. The two younger girls wore identical heirloom dresses of ivory batiste. The full round collars were fashioned with insertions of lace, tiny gathers and borders of lace ruffles, which also banded the puff sleeves. The skirts of the dresses were sewn with lace insertions separating the rows of embroidered fabric and small tucks. The flower girls carried miniature bouquets of the bridal flowers.
The ring bearers of the ceremony were four nephews of the bride. Peter Michael Hensgens, George Walker Lyons, Henry William Trahan and David Braxton Hensgens Jr. were handsomely dressed in small grey suits and black neckties. They sported brown cowboy boots that were gifts from the bride and groom. The young gentlemen respectfully bowed at the altar and entered the pews of their families.
Garrett Petry was the groom’s honor attendant. The other groomsmen were Nicholas Sabelhaus, Sean LeLeaux, Gabe Crochet and Caleb Richard, friends of the groom; John Gordy Broussard IV, cousin of the groom; and John Peter Hensgens, cousin of the bride. Serving as ushers were Kendall Meche and Heath Petry, friends of the groom, Lance Heinen, cousin of the groom, and Bryan Howard, brother-in-law of the groom. The men of the wedding party were dressed in dark grey tailored suits with black neckties. They wore boutonnieres of white ranunculus and Italian ruscus.
Mrs. Hensgens, the former Valerie Moody, chose for her daughter’s wedding, a formal gown of silk lace in hues of soft taupe. The lovely, three-piece ensemble featured a lace jacket accented with bugle beading and a wide scoop neckline. The shell and skirt of the silk charmeuse gown were fashioned with an overlay of lace. The skirt fell to an evening length and flared slightly at the tulip hemline. The bride selected for her mother a delicate bouquet of miniature white roses, Italian ruscus and white stock that she wore at her wrist.
Mrs. Arlene Augustine Heinen, mother of the groom, was noted wearing a beautiful gown in shimmering midnight blue. A wide scoop neckline and three quarter length sleeves formed the bodice of the formal, A-line design. Soft folds of fabric in an elegant cowl design draped from the shoulders to the back of the gown. Complementary accessories and the bride’s selection of small blooms worn at her wrist completed her attire.
At the end of the Nuptial Mass, the young couple brought a rose to the Blessed Mother statue. The choir sang the beautiful “Ave Maria” as they entrusted their newly married lives into her care and protection. They returned to the main aisle and presented roses to their mothers in loving gestures of gratitude.
The reception for the new Mr. and Mrs. Heinen was held at the Grand Opera House. The prominent staircase of the historic opera house was the focal point of the foyer. It was beautifully decorated with the candlelight of ascending ivory pillars nestled in magnolia leaves and large, white magnolia blooms. Guests were greeted with glasses of champagne as they entered the foyer and paused to sign the wedding signature book of the couple’s engagement pictures. The book was placed on an antique buffet beside a lovely, gold candelabra and a footed, porcelain bowl arranged with magnolias.
Tall arrangements of the bridal flowers, displayed on antique bronze candlestick columns, graced the hall as the centerpieces of the guest tables that were draped in white, floor length linens. The reflection of votive candles added to the beauty of the floral arrangements which were seen at varying heights throughout the hall. Cocktail tables framed the dance floor and were topped with small rose bowls filled with ivory and pink roses.
Of special interest was a vintage hutch decorated with greenery and votive candles that displayed the engagement and wedding pictures of the parents and grandparents of the couple.
A quaint, recessed room in the hall served as the perfect setting for the bridal cake service. The cake was a beautiful, five tiered confection of simple design, dressed in ivory buttercream and embellished with the illusion of pearl beading separating each tier. Full blooms of ivory and soft pink roses were placed in artful fashion around the layers of the cake and on the crowning tier. The cake was displayed on an engraved silver cake plateau. The plateau was surrounded by the bridesmaids’ bouquets, enhancing the beauty of the table covered in an embroidered organdy cloth. Guests enjoyed delicious centers of amaretto raspberry and Mexican white chocolate. The cake was served by Mrs. Charlotte Leonards, aunt of the bride.
The groom’s red velvet cake was made by his aunt, Mrs. Angella Guilbeau Heinen. The large, rectangular cake was creatively designed in a western motif. It was frosted in various shades of tan and brown fondant, giving the appearance of a leather covering. The initials of the groom were in the center of the cake, and the sides were decorated in an intricately detailed floral pattern. Framing the cake service was a wooden backdrop that held an iron circular monogram of the family initial. Items depicting the groom’s hobbies and interests were also displayed. The cake was served by Mrs. Cynthia Broussard, aunt and godmother of the groom.
For the traditional nuptial toast, the wedding party gathered around the couple at the bridal cake table. The bride and groom used the heirloom sterling silver goblets that were used by the bride’s parents at their wedding. The antique goblets were a wedding gift to Mr. and Mrs. Braxton I. Moody Sr., the maternal great-great-grandparents of the bride.
As the end of the reception drew near, guests lined the foyer of the hall and flowed out into the warm, spring evening under the beautiful balcony of the opera house. They were given handfuls of rice from the Hensgens farm as they awaited the departure of the young couple. Amid a showering of rice and tender farewells, the couple left for their wedding trip to Costa Rica. They will reside in Hathaway upon their return.
A rehearsal dinner hosted by the groom’s parents was held at the opera house prior to the wedding. The guests enjoyed a delicious rib eye steak dinner with all the trimmings prepared by Mr. Frederick Heinen and ended the evening with memorable toasts to the bride and groom.
Mrs. Heinen is a graduate of Notre Dame High School. She attended Louisiana State University where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication disorders and was a member of Chi Omega Sorority. She also received a Master of Arts degree in speech and language pathology from LSU.
Mr. Heinen is a graduate of Welsh High School. He is attending McNeese State University and will receive a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture in the fall. He has excelled in collegiate rodeo circuits as a member of the McNeese rodeo team, and is currently farming, alongside his father, on the family farm in Hathaway.