Same-sex couples marry in Philadelphia over the weekend

phl_pa_doma4 Crowds gathered at city Hall on May 20 after a federal court judge struck down Pennsylvania's Defense of Marriage Act, finding it unconstitutional, paving the way for same-sex couples of marry in the commonwealth. Credit: Christina Paciolla/METRO


It's been exactly one week since a federal court judge found Pennsylvania's Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, paving the way for same-sex couples to get married in the commonwealth.


Mayor Michael Nutter announced over the weekend that since May 21, 85 licenses had been issued to couples in Philadelphia alone and several were married on Friday and Saturday after the mandatory three-day waiting period. Eighteen couples applied for marriage the day the same-sex marriage ban was lifted.



Eight judges from the Court of Common Pleas, and Nutter himself, performed weddings over the weekend.

Couples who applied for licenses on Tuesday or Wednesday were personally invited by City Hall to have their marriage ceremony officiated. Eight couples were wed on Friday while 17 were wed the next day.

"I was honored to join the judges … to officiate a few unions myself," Nutter said in a statement, "and hopefully, I will perform many more ceremonies in the future. Uniting two people in marriage is one of my favorite official duties to perform …"

Hundreds of people celebrated at City Hall in Philadelphia the day the ruling came down. Federal District Judge John E. Jones said in his decision it was time to discard old laws "into the ash heap of history."

The officiants:

Judges who performed marriage ceremonies on Friday and Saturday were: President Judge Sheila Woods-Skipper, Judges Daniel J. Anders, Diana Louise Anhalt, Mark I. Bernstein, Ann Butchart, Barbara A. McDermott, Joseph D. O’Keefe and Lisa M. Rau.

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Same-sex couples line up for marriage licenses at City Hall in Philadelphia