Judy Ann Santos and Ryan Agoncillo wanted their wedding to be a private affair. So private that the couple's selected guests showed up at the ceremony without cell phones and cameras.
"Very nice yung set-up niya," revealed TV host Suzi Entrata-Abrera, in an interview with GMA News. Suzi, co-host of the GMA-7 daily morning program Unang Hirit, was one of the principal sponsors.
Suzi described the blushing bride as "para siyang diwata." She added: "Ang luha ng lola, talagang... Iyak siya nang iyak. Sobra siyang happy. Tapos si Ryan, ang laki-laki ng ngiti niya."
EARLY-MORNING AFFAIR. Given Judy Ann's stature as a celebrity, the wedding that took place yesterday morning, April 28, at San Juan Nepomuceno Church in San Juan, Batangas, was surprisingly low key.
Judy Ann wore a Paul Cabral wedding gown. The wedding was exclusive only with the couple's closest friends and immediate family. Aside from Suzi, standing as principal sponsors were photographer Bien Bautista, SMART Communications spokesman Mon Isberto, Ryan's U.S.-based uncle Benjie Gonzales, Judy Ann's longtime road manager Jane Buencamino, and director Rory Quintos.
Megastar Sharon Cuneta was handpicked by the couple to serve as Matron of Honor while Ryan's elder brother Dondi stood as Best Man. The young couple's adopted daughter, Johanna Lois or Yohan, was the flower girl.
Also present to witness the occasion were Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan, KC Concepcion, Paolo Abrera (husband of Suzi), and Joyce Bernal. Fr. Tito Caluag officiated the wedding, which reportedly started at 7 a.m.
Early reports said that Ryan's parents were married in the same church. It was, however, clarified that Mr. Chito and Nina Agoncillo tied the knot in Rosario Church, Batangas City. Unfortunately, calamities over the years destroyed the church, prompting Ryan and Juday to choose the nearby San Juan Nepomuceno Church instead.
The secrecy of the affair caught even the local residents and some church officials by surprise.
FAIRY-TALE ENDING. The wedding entourage proceeded to a local resort after the nuptials for breakfast.
SNN: Showbiz News Ngayon reported that the newlyweds initially wanted to serve the wedding guests a tapsilog meal for breakfast outside the church. The idea was scrapped since it would surely generate attention, and also to maintain the privacy of Juday and Ryan and all their guests.
An evening reception was also prepared to accommodate other guests. Most of the couple's friends—like Gladys Reyes, Bianca Gonzalez, Gina Pareño, Paolo Bediones, and Dominic Ochoa—came all the way from Manila.
Judy Ann and Ryan met in 2004 when they worked together for ABS-CBN's primetime fantasy series Krystala. The couple at first tried to keep the relationship a secret. Their actions together on various public gatherings, however, revealed the obvious.
Ryan proposed to Judy Ann last year, May 11, during an out-of-town trip celebrating the actress's 30th birthday.
Many thought that the wedding was scheduled on May 2, as previously reported. But the actual wedding date was kept secret by the couple, even to their close friends.
"Sana sila ang maging ideal example na from now on, kapag ikinasal wala nang hiwalayan," Judy Ann's longtime manager, Alfie Lorenzo, said when chanced upon by GMA News outside the church.
Alfie's presence proved that his good relationship with Judy Ann, as well as with Ryan, remains intact, contrary to rumors.