Three things they kept their eyes on: the sacrament, vows, and beginning anew
We could almost imagine it as a plot of a romcom–two young politicians meeting for the first time ever through elections, falling in love, getting hitched. Such is the story of Congresswoman Sheena P. Tan and Congressman Faustino Dy V. Even if Inno and Sheena had practically grown up in neighboring hometowns, fate never brought the two together until they were both preparing for the 2019 elections.
“I remember being asked about Into in wakes and events I attended, only to be tongue-tied and out of words because I really did not know anything about him beyond our work,” Congresswoman Sheena says. The rumors preceded their actual love story, but in the end, the two did fall in love. “Inno proposed in November 2020. We started our preparations right away and got married on March 28, 2021.”
Because of the frequently changing travel restrictions, Congressman Inno and Congresswoman Sheena decided a mere three days before their big day to hold their intimate wedding at their hometown, Isabela. Below, Congresswoman Sheena shares with us in her own words what their inspiration was for their wedding.
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Tell us about your love story.
We first got acquainted in December 2018 during the preparations for the 2019 election. We were both running for a position in the House of Representatives–I was to represent 4th District of Isabela, and Inno for the 6th District. 4th and 6th were neighboring districts, with Inno’s hometown in Echague being only 15 minutes away from my hometown in Santiago. Though we were both from Isabela, we never really met until December of 2018.
We both never really entertained romantic pursuits at this time as our campaign schedules were quite hectic. And while there were already rumors that we were already a couple at this time or at the very least dating, the truth is we really kept our relationship on a professional level. We would talk once in a while, but it would mainly revolve around coordination in events that we both had to attend. I remember being asked about Inno in wakes and events I attended only to be tongue-tied and out of words because I really did not know anything about him beyond our work.
I only got to know him on a deeper and more personal level after we took our oath as representatives of our respective districts. Since we were spending so much time together in the workplace and even at social events, love and admiration blossomed naturally and the rest, as they say, was history.
Inno proposed a year and a half later in November 2020. We started our preparations right away and got married on March 28, 2021.
Did you have a theme for your wedding?
Simple and minimalist. We wanted the solemnity of the cathedral to be the focal point. We also wanted cool pastel colors to dominate in the entourage dresses, suits, and the decors because it was almost the peak of summer.
What were the challenges encountered during the wedding preparation?
We initially prepared for an out of town wedding, but subsequent developments prevented us from pushing through with it. As the wedding day got closer, we focused on what was essential–to receive the sacrament of marriage, say our vows before God and our family, and start our life together. Inno really did everything to give me the best wedding despite the circumstances. He was surprisingly very involved in the wedding preparations, from the color and fabric of his entourage suits to the appetizer to be served before the reception proper. I could not be more thankful that our teamwork flourished during this stressful time.
We had to finally decide on having the wedding in Isabela just three days before the big day because of the ever changing guidelines for gatherings during the pandemic and of course, the safety and convenience of our family and friends. Our suppliers were more than willing to travel to Isabela despite the short notice and we really cannot thank them enough. While it would have been great to go out-of-town with family and friends, there's really nothing like a hometown wedding- the warmth and comfort of home.
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How did the you handle the challenges?
We shifted our focus on what’s most important, receiving the sacrament of marriage, the presence of our family, and starting our life together. Nothing else mattered that much than these three.
How did you feel during the wedding?
Very calm and happy that finally after many bumps in the road, the Lord protected our families and blessed us with a wonderful day and amazing people to make our wedding possible.
What were your highlights of your wedding?
Sheena: Teary-eyed Into as I walked down the aisle. My mom hugging Inno very tight and my dad holding my hand very tight before he gave me away.
Inno: When the doors of the cathedral opened and the first ray of light entered the hall. I was standing at the center of the altar and I could see everything happening. My parents and siblings were standing beside me and they were constantly checking on me to see if I was already crying.
What were the important things that you learned while planning your intimate wedding?
Communication is key. It’s such an awesome experience to share and savor with your future partner. What better way to test your teamwork. Think of the wedding preps as pre-game for the real life problems you will face as husband and wife.
Advice for other couples who are planning to get married or will be getting in the time of a pandemic?
Pray hard about your decision to get married and just get on with the wedding.
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The Dream Team:
Ceremony Venue: Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel (Gamu, Isabela) | Reception Venue: Casa de Madera (Cauayan, Isabela) | Ceremony Gown: Mak Tumang | Reception Gown: Martin Bautista | Bridal robe and Father of the Bride suit: Emerie Studio | Bridal shoes: Jefferson Si | Groom and Entourage Suits: JE and Co | Mother of the Bride gown: Joe San Antonio | Band: 3rd Avenue | Emcee: JC Alelis | Photography: Toto Villaruel | Videography: Jason Magbanua | Coordination: Christine Ong-Te Events | Event Stylist: Gideon Hermosa | Makeup: Mickey See | Hairstyling: Renz Pangilinan | Entourage gowns: Kariz Polintan Atelier | Food: Chef Cocoy Ventura and Mix Cuisine (Cauayan, Isabela) | Cake: Love Cakes by Ann and Gan | Pastries: Ellie Banellie Pastries