Despite Texas' statewide ban on gay marriage, county officials in Austin married a same-sex couple on Thursday under a one-time court order issued for medical reasons.
Travis County spokeswoman Ginny Ballard said the marriage occurred Thursday, though it wasn't immediately clear if the license has legal standing. The marriage followed a state District Court order instructing that officials not rely on Texas' unconstitutional prohibitions on same-sex marriage.
Texas' decade-old, voter-approved ban on gay marriage was declared unconstitutional in federal court last year, but the judge stayed the ruling to allow the state to appeal.
The license was issued exclusively for Sarah Goodfriend and Suzanne Bryant, who married in a ceremony presided over by a rabbi immediately after a marriage license was issued. County Clerk Dana Debeauvoir said one of the women, who live in Austin, "has severe and immediate health concerns."
The marriage ceremony was personal, with friends and the couple's teenage daughters standing nearby, but also a public statement, with photos of their vows in front of the county sign, The Austin American Statesman reported.
"It's very exciting," Bryant told the newspaper before the wedding. "My little one was worried about missing her history class. I said we'll be making history."
Debeauvoir released a statement saying she issued a marriage licensed based on an order from District Judge David Wahlberg directing that she immediately "cease and desist relying on the unconstitutional Texas prohibitions against same-sex marriage as a basis for not issuing a marriage."
Debeauvoir said any additional licenses issued to same-sex couple must be court ordered.
"We are all waiting for a final decision on marriage equality," Debeauvoir said in her statement. "However, this couple may not get the chance to hear the outcome of this issue because one person's health."