Bloomington, Indiana Mayor Mark Kruzan on Thursday presided over a “wedding” ceremony for 13 gay and lesbian couples.

Indiana law prohibits gay couples from marrying and Republicans at the State House have proposed a constitutional amendment banning such unions.

The symbolic wedding vows were staged at the Buskirk-Chumley theater to protest the amendment.

“By the power not yet invested in me by the state of Indiana, I pronounce you partners in life,” the mayor told the couples.

More than 10 Monroe County Council and Bloomington City Council members attended the ceremony, throwing flowers onto the couples at its end.

“It is symbolic,” Kruzan told Indiana Public Media, “and it's not power that's vested in me as the mayor of Bloomington. But I think it's important for people to realize that there are a lot of people who depend on voters willing to stand up and say, 'This is what we would like to have the power to do.'” (Raw video from the event is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

Participant Danielle McClelland, who “married” her partner of 20 years, Susan Ferentinos, said, “I only wish it were real.”