The final road to the altar for the four couples celebrating a group wedding in Long Beach on Sunday was a bit unconventional.

Most of the newlyweds, like high school sweethearts Angel Lewis and Christopher Woodbridge, had lived together for years and were raising families.

But the couple’s plans to marry kept getting stalled, partly because saving money has been a struggle while raising five children. And last year, wedding bands they had purchased were stolen from their home.

So it was a godsend for them when the pastor at Parkcrest Christian Church, Mike Goldsworthy, announced during his sermon two weeks ago that the church would throw a free wedding and reception for any unmarried couples in the congregation who were living together.

“If your only barrier is the cost of a wedding, we will remove that,” he said.

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