Cape Town - A love story that crosses not only international borders but religious barriers has played itself out in Cape Town.
The inspiring tale of Fatemeh Montazeri and Thomas Boughey now includes a new chapter... a wedding.
The two got married at the Open Mosque in Wynberg on Wednesday. It was the first time a foreign wedding of different faiths took place at the mosque.
Bride Montazeri is an Arab from Iran and groom Boughey, a Christian from the Cape.
Interfaith unions are illegal in Iran and are not sanctioned by the traditional clergy in South Africa
Dr Taj Hargey, president and Imam of the Open Mosque, said Montazeri flew to Cape Town for the wedding.
Dressed in a beautiful white wedding gown and veil, Montazeri was met in the mosque by Boughey, who wore a grey suit and pink tie.
Hargey welcomed all the guests - men and women - into the mosque. In his sermon he explained the importance of marriage and the respect and acceptance of different faiths.
“This marriage brings together two people of distinct faiths. This union bring families together.”
He said the Qur'an was “all inclusive of all world religions”. “The Qu’ran debunks subjective nonsense. Islamic scripture does not endorse religious exclusivity. Islam’s mantra is one God, one humanity, one destiny.”
In terms of love and marriage, he said, there was deliberate divine design that all humans find a soulmate and that watching a sunset with another person was that much sweeter.
He added that “people cannot help who they fall in love with”.
“Thomas and Fatemeh are taking a gigantic leap towards God,” he said.
As the couple exchanged their vows and rings - with Montezeri having a little difficulty with some of the English words - it was clear that the pair were in love.
After the ceremony, Boughey, who is Anglican, said he was “over the moon” about his new wife.
The couple met through mutual friends while in Turkey and fell in love.
Although Boughey has not met his wife’s family yet, he said they would be leaving for Tehran later in the month where they would also be celebrating their union with her family.
Montazeri was all smiles after the ceremony.
She explained that they were unable to get married in her country because of their different religions.
The couple held their reception with family and friends in Constantia.
Boughey and Montezeri were married under Muslim rites, but also have a civil union.