Photos of a Maryland bride before her wedding has generated controversy recently as the image shows her presenting her father with a “certificate of purity” from her gynecologist that proves her virginity before her marriage.
The certificate states that her “hymen is intact” and also includes a scripture on abstinence. The scripture, 1 Corinthians 6:20, reads: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
The certificate itself reads:
On the 10th of May 2006, I, Brelyn Freeman, made a vow to glorify God in my body and spirit which are God’s because I have been bought with a price (Jesus). I have kept this commitment and present this certificate to my father Dr Michael A. Freeman to show how I have honored God and my earthly father in my body by maintaining my purity and that my hymen is intact on this 10th day of October 2015.
The bride, Brelyn Bowman, married her new husband, Timothy, earlier this month and presented the certificate to her father, who is a pastor, following the ceremony. Her father stated that he did not know his daughter was planning on presenting him with this certificate, telling BuzzFeed, “I was totally unaware of what was about to take place. During the remarks, she shared that she wanted to honor me by not allowing any man to touch her before her husband.”
The photo and certificate have generated controversy online, with many objecting to the idea of having to prove physical virginity before marriage and others saying that it was strange that the bride would share intimate details of her sex life with her father instead of keeping those details between herself and her husband.
Many, including BuzzFeed, have also pointed out the amount of hymenal tissue is not a true indicator of whether a woman is a virgin or not.