In 15 years as a Roman Catholic priest, Fr. Alberto Cutié presided at two to three weddings most weekends. “I have been a marriage factory,” says the Cuban-American priest, dubbed Father Oprah for his relationship-advice TV show. On June 26 he was back at the altar—this time as a groom. Before 60 guests at Miami’s St. Bernard de Clairvaux Episcopal Church, he wed Ruhama Canellis, 35, the divorced mom for whom he risked scandal and later left his church. “I felt at peace,” Cutié, 40, told PEOPLE EN ESPAÑOL after taking a honeymoon in Greece.
Sparks flew when Cutié met Ruhama at a 1998 Sunday mass. Until then, he says, “I never believed in love at first sight.” Still, their friendship grew intimate only two years ago. In May paparazzi caught them in a seaside embrace—proof he had broken his obligation to be chaste. “It was a struggle: ‘What does God want?'” says Cutié. After asking his congregation’s forgiveness, he decided love “was a gift from God”—and to become an Episcopal priest.
As Cutié finishes his training, he, Ruhama and her son Christian, 14, are preparing to move near his new parish in Biscayne Park. For now the newlyweds sound like, well, typical newlyweds. How many kids will they have? “However many God wants,” Cutié answers, with a laugh. “I don’t know about that,” Ruhama counters, smiling. Ah, love!