Pictures of Same-Sex Weddings in Australia That Show Love Is Love

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Crowds celebrate the official Melbourne postal survey result announcement at the State Library of Victoria on November 15, 2017, in Melbourne, Australia. Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Australia's Parliament voted in December to legalize same-sex marriage, and after a 30-day notice period, the first LGBT couples are tying the knot at midnight on January 9.

"It's another way to show your love and appreciation of your partner in front of the people in your life," athlete Craig Burns, a 29-year-old sprinter who will compete in the Commonwealth Games on Australia's Gold Coast in April, told the Associated Press. He married his partner Luke Sullivan at midnight near the east coast city of Tweed Heads.

Burns and Sullivan weren't the only two to get married as soon as they legally could. Lainey Carmichael, 51, and Roz Kitschke, 46, married shortly after dawn at their home, according to the AP. Kitschke told the AP it was mainly to take advantage of the weather.

"New day, new era — and we don't like the heat that much," Kitschke said.

There were just four votes against the bill in the Australian House of Representatives, and the Senate overwhelmingly passed the legislation. Although it took Australia 22 unsuccessful attempts to pass same-sex marriage since 2004, the monumental amount of public supports allowed it to join 25 other countries that have legalized same-sex marriage, including two others that did so in 2017: Malta and Germany.

"This belongs to us all," Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, a longtime supporter of same-sex marriage, said the day the legislation passed through the Senate. "This is Australia: fair, diverse, loving and filled with respect. For every one of us this is a great day."

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Craig Burns and Luke Sullivan kiss during the wedding ceremony at Summergrove Estate on January 9, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the theater where they met 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect today. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Gillian Brady and Lisa Goldsmith hold one of the first same-sex marriage ceremonies in Western Australia at The Court on January 9, 2018 in Perth, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Matt Jelonek/Getty Images
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Craig Burns and Luke Sullivan celebrate during their wedding ceremony at Summergrove Estate on January 9, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the theater where they meet 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Lisa Goldsmith and Gillian Brady during the wedding ceremony at The Court on January 9, 2018 in Perth, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Matt Jelonek/Getty Images
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Rebecca Hickson and Sarah Turnbull pose for photographs after being married in a ceremony in Newcastle, Australia. AAP/Dan Himbrechts/via REUTERS
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Felicity Evers and Jenny Thompson are married in a ceremony in Newcastle, Australia, January 9, 2018. AAP/Dan Himbrechts/via REUTERS
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the thetare where they meet 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the theatre where they met 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect today. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the thetare where they meet 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the thetare where they meet 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
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Antony McManus and Ron Van Houwelingen get married on January 9, 2018 in the thetare where they meet 30 years ago in Melbourne, Australia. Couples across Australia wed in midnight ceremonies as the Australian Marriage Act legalizing same-sex marriage took effect on January 9. Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

This new law expands older Australian legislation that gave same-sex couples government benefits, employment and taxes, but didn't allow them to be married in the same way heterosexual couples could be. The law also changed the definition of marriage from "the union of a man and a woman" to "the union of two people."

"This is a big victory," Evan Wolfson, the founder of Freedom to Marry, which led the campaign for marriage equality in the United States, told The New York Times. "It is a huge affirmation of the dignity of gay people in yet another country, and that will reverberate in the lives of people across Australia and the world."

Pictures of Same-Sex Weddings in Australia That Show Love Is Love | World