News Articles

Marriage proposal gives rally surprise ending

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–After the lights had dimmed and official festivities had ended for the live national broadcast of True Love Waits’ “Seize the Net,” Nathan Cravey walked up on stage and in front of hundreds of teenagers asked his girlfriend to marry him.

She said yes.

Teenage girls screamed and cried while teenage boys pumped their fists in the air in their approval of the pending union between Cravey, 24, a youth intern at Wedgwood Baptist Church, and Allison Hefner, 22.

“It was a perfect way to end a service about waiting for true love,” said Gayle Hefner, Alison’s mother. “What a testimony for these young people to see two believers in love with each other. These young kids think a lot of Nathan and it’s really an example.”

The decision to pop the big question following the Feb. 13 True Love Waits national broadcast was crafted by Cravey and Wedgwood’s youth minister, Jay Fannin.

“I knew how I felt about Allison and the idea kind of hit us at the same time,” Cravey told Baptist Press.

After the broadcast had ended, Fannin invited students to stand at the front of the church in age groups to show their commitment to purity. When Cravey’s age group was recognized, he and Hefner stood on the stage while he prayed.

Afterwards, Cravey, noticeably nervous, turned to Hefner and shared a few words of testimony.

“I want to talk about an answer to God’s faithfulness to me,” Cravey told the crowd. “My answer stands beside me.”

By that time, the crowd was beginning to figure out what was happening. But until Cravey pulled out a ring from his pocket and knelt down, Hefner said she didn’t know what was going on.

“I couldn’t believe it,” she said. “I saw some of our friends in the audience and I couldn’t figure out why they were there.”

Hefner affirmed Cravey’s proposal and the crowd gave them a standing ovation while the pair hugged on stage.

Then, if that wasn’t enough, Cravey and Hefner were serenaded by Christian artists Phat Chance and Joy Williams, singing “The One.”

Cravey and Hefner met in a Sunday School class shortly after he moved to Fort Worth, Texas, from Louisiana. They have been dating for more than a year and a half. Cravey said he will enroll in Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in the fall.

No date has been set for the wedding.

As for her future in-laws, Hefner’s mother said she and her husband are delighted to have Cravey as part of the family.

“It’s what all parents pray for their children — a Christian mate,” Gayle Hefner said.

    About the Author

  • Todd Starnes