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Wedding at Trollwood Park Thursday all about second chances

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Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - A wedding at Trollwood Park tonight was all about second chances.

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The faith-based Jail Chaplains program at the Cass County Jail hosted the ceremony for one of their returning citizens.

James Williams and Sawain Zahir met in Fargo five years ago - Sawain says she knew immediately that James was the one.

But trouble and substance abuse came between them - James served time in Cass County Jail.

Now, they say having God in their lives has changed everything.

They're the sights we've come to expect at a wedding.

A cake, a nervous groom, and a beautiful bride walking down the aisle.

But this joyful celebration came from hardship.

Chaplain Sonju: "I met James in jail."

The groom - James Williams - is part of the jail chaplains program: a faith-based mentorship program in the Cass County Jail offering inmates hope.

When James met Sawain Zahir five years ago, they were in a darker place.

Sawain Zahir/Bride: "We didn't have God in our lives, we had many bumps, many mistakes."

James Williams/Groom/Former Inmate: "I would drink and become a different person - I would take off."

One day, James was pulled over for DUI. He had no drivers' license, and was carrying a knife.

He served time in Cass County Jail.

There, he became involved with the jail chaplains - which he says turned his life around.

James: "I'm living proof that even the most evil of us can change through Jesus Christ. If you just pray, what do you have to lose?"

Sawain: "Having God in our life has changed everything."

Now, the newlyweds are celebrating not only their marriage, but their renewed hope.

They look forward to their new life together - and raising their 3-year-old daughter, Sonya.

James: "it's just an exciting day. I'm a lucky man married to a beautiful woman."

Sawain: "This is such a blessing, but what I was looking forward to most is having God bless our family."

Everything needed to make today's wedding possible was donated.

They included the festivities with the Jail Chaplain's annual picnic.

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Becky Parker
Becky Parker - Becky Parker joined the WDAY 6 News team in July of 2012. She was born and raised in Williston, North Dakota.  She graduated from North Dakota State University with a degree in broadcast journalism and a minor in political science.   At NDSU, Becky served as News Director for ‘SU TV News, the university’s first ever student-run newscast. She was also an anchor and reporter for the organization.   Before coming to WDAY, Becky was reporting for Lakeland Public Television at their Brainerd, MN bureau. She also spent internship hours at WDAZ in Grand Forks and KVRR Fox in Fargo.   If you have story ideas or questions, please e-mail Becky at bparker@wday.com
(701) 241-5322
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