”Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace.” Should This be a Part of Your Wedding?

Imagine your wedding, flowing seamlessly along – right until the minister asks if anyone knows any reason why you should not be married. Whether someone is truly trying to subvert your nuptials, or is simply a jovial and well-meaning yet obtuse friend, an answer to this question could ruin or dampen your special day.

Originally, this question was posed to wedding guests to bring to light if there was an unknown legal reason would invalidate the marriage. This question is still legally enforced in some places, such as the Church of London. Thankfully, though, many weddings overthrow it completely.

If it is important to you one way or the other, ask your officiant if this part of the ceremony is a required element of the church.

To include the guests in your ceremony without this potentially awkward step, ask those who are attending to join in a blessing for your union. Perhaps encourage guest involvement by having community vows.

This can be done by having the officiant ask, “Do all who are present here today, surround this couple with love, and offer them their support, counsel, strength, comfort, and prayers?” Those in attendance would answer, “We do.” The officiant may continue, “Will you agree to help them keep their bonds holy, help them cross over hard times, and and remind them of their love for one another?” Guests respond, “We will.”

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