Delaware Senator Chris Coons delivered the sermon on New Year's Day at Delaware's first gay civil union ceremony, the AP reported.

Coons, a supporter of gay marriage, was among the more than 400 people who attended the civil union of lawyers Lisa Goodman and Drewry Fennell.

Goodman is the executive director of Equality Delaware, the group that led the fight for the state's first law to recognize the relationships of gay and lesbian couples, and Fennell is the head of the state Criminal Justice Council. The women have been together 14 years.

Governor Jack Markell signed the legislation before 600 cheering supporters in May and the law took effect at 10AM on January 1, 2012. New Castle County Clerk of the Peace Ken Boulden opened Sunday to issue licenses by appointment only. However, he is not expected to perform civil union ceremonies in his office until January 5.

Goodman and Fennell obtained their license from Boulden and had their civil union solemnized at the Trinity Episcopal Church in downtown Wilmington.

The congregation gave the couple a standing ovation after the union was pronounced.