Author Topic: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?  (Read 1261 times)

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TurtleDove

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #15 on: October 07, 2014, 10:49:34 PM »
The ceremony is not where the cost comes in. That's the reception, largely. So to base invitations to the wedding on cost doesn't really make sense. Here, since the OP is aware it isn't just a situation of "we don't share your beliefs" but rather "we find your beliefs offensive" I think it makes sense to just avoid that issue. Just celebrate the marriage. Don't force the issue of varying beliefs.

camlan

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2014, 06:48:29 AM »
I have a friend of Religion A. She married a nice guy of Religion B. Nice Guy's father flatly refused to enter a Religion A house of worship--he claimed he had nothing against the religion, no problem with his son marrying someone of that religion, but he would not enter a Religion A house of worship. No religious leader of Religion B was willing to perform a "mixed marriage." So they ended up finding a completely non-religious venue for the ceremony and reception.

I can see making that accommodation for a parent. But that's probably where I'd draw the line, a parent, or someone that one or both members of the Happy Couple feel really needs to be at the ceremony.

So I think the OP and her DH should figure out a guest list, make sure all the guests know what the ceremony will be like, and hope that those who would be offended decline the invitation.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Alicia

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2014, 07:08:35 AM »
Family remains family even as friends come and go.
I know I would be hurt and it would probably permanently hurt my relationship with a family member if they invited friends over close family. As a friend I'd be uncomfortable being invited to a wedding ceremony and finding out I had taken a spot away from say a sibling or aunt.
Now if you barely have a relationship with your family this goes out the window. But  I'd invite the family and friends I loved and most wanted to attend and assume that they will either attend or not. I'd ask for separate RSVPs for the ceremony and reception.

CakeEater

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2014, 07:32:20 AM »
From a close family guest's point of view:

I'm mainstream protestant in my beliefs. I'd happily attend all kinds of wedding ceremonies of different faiths. If I really thought a ceremony of a close family member might be something approaching demonic, I'd appreciate a discussion about it beforehand.

I'd want a discussion where I could express my discomfort with the belief system, while being able to express my support of the union, and have the family member understand that while I supported them, I couldn't attend such a ceremony in good conscience. And if the family member getting married felt it, I'd like to hear that they understood my reservations. And I'd rather not attend the ceremony.

It would depend what the belief was, whether I felt OK about celebrating that kind of ceremony afterwards.

I think you can happily just invite your closest family to the ceremony, citing space restrictions to the extended family. And if any of your closest family fall into the aforementioned category, probably an honest conversation about whether they'll feel comfortable attending would be in order.

gellchom

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2014, 08:01:33 AM »
I wouldn't split out ceremony invitees and reception invitees at all.

It's your wedding and you figure out the guest list according to your budget and space like everybody does.  If you can't afford everyone you want to invite, you trim the guest list or the price per head.  If you don't have space for everyone you want to invite, you trim the guest list or you change venue.

The fact that your family practice different beliefs is a red herring.
I've been to weddings and other ceremonies that were based in a religion that I, personally, don't subscribe to.  I went because I care about my friends and I know the religion means something to them and I dressed nicely and I shut my mouth about my personal opinion of religion.  That's what a good guest should do and if it offends them to the point where they can't keep their mouth shut, they should politely decline the invitation.

The bolded is a much more succinct way of saying what I was trying to!

Make sure you aren't using the discomfort factor -- which is probably present in many more weddings than you might think anyway -- as an excuse for distorting the real issue: venue vs. guest list. 

I'm worried you may be trying to convince yourself that Aunt Diana won't mind being excluded from the ceremony because she'd be uncomfortable anyway.

LadyL

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2014, 08:53:13 AM »

As it is, I could not fit my entire extended family in the space, let alone any of DF's family.  Furthermore, on my side at least, none of them practice the same religion I do.  The ceremony would be confusing at best to them and offensive/demonic at worst.  At least one would find the idea of an hour-long ceremony to be ridiculous (he's been quoted as saying "if it's longer than fifteen minutes, I'm outta there", and that was for his OWN wedding).  While I'm certainly planning on discussing the ceremony with my immediate family and answering any questions they might have, I've spent many years having my beliefs looked upon as 'inferior' or 'just some kind of phase'.  Even though I don't get that (direct) negativity anymore, the sting is still there and I'm worried the pressure to just have a 'normal' (i.e., something closer to what they recognize) ceremony will just make things more unpleasant.

It sounds like immediate family only for the ceremony, plus a few friends, might make more sense then? I imagine your immediate family (parents, siblings, grandparents) do not label your beliefs "demonic" or "inferior" and would be open to a dialogue about what your ceremony will represent to you. I wouldn't waste the energy on an  intolerant extended family.

One of my cardinal rules of planning our wedding was that it was only as big as it was (125 people) because I *like* the vast majority of my relatives and in-laws. I wanted them to be there, otherwise we would probably have eloped. Weddings are too much stress to be accommodating the preferences of people who you don't even care for. There were maybe 3-5 people we invited who I worried would be vocally negative about aspects of our wedding, but thankfully they all did behave themselves. I wouldn't want the stress of worrying about more than a small handful of people.


mime

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #21 on: October 08, 2014, 10:49:36 AM »
It sounds like immediate family only for the ceremony, plus a few friends, might make more sense then? I imagine your immediate family (parents, siblings, grandparents) do not label your beliefs "demonic" or "inferior" and would be open to a dialogue about what your ceremony will represent to you. I wouldn't waste the energy on an  intolerant extended family.

One of my cardinal rules of planning our wedding was that it was only as big as it was (125 people) because I *like* the vast majority of my relatives and in-laws. I wanted them to be there, otherwise we would probably have eloped. Weddings are too much stress to be accommodating the preferences of people who you don't even care for. There were maybe 3-5 people we invited who I worried would be vocally negative about aspects of our wedding, but thankfully they all did behave themselves. I wouldn't want the stress of worrying about more than a small handful of people.

I really reallly like the bolded!



Lynn2000

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #22 on: October 08, 2014, 11:23:46 AM »
I like gellchom's suggestions about breaking down the parts. I think that's great advice for clarifying your thoughts, no matter what the concerns are--it's just a thought experiment, after all, you don't ever have to tell anyone which list they ended up on.

After you make a list of the key people you'd like to attend, in theory, I would sit down with them and go over the ceremony, and see how they really feel when it's put to them directly as something tangible, not abstract. I'm pretty open-minded about other religions but I could imagine some things I would be very uncomfortable witnessing--let's say it was a Betazoid wedding where everyone was supposed to be naked, for example. :) Even if they said non-Betazoid guests had the option of keeping their clothes on, I honestly think I would be too uncomfortable with the HC and various Betazoid guests being naked around me, to focus on the ceremony in the proper spirit. I would appreciate this being explained to me in advance and being assured that it was totally cool if I just wanted to attend the reception, and skip the ceremony, no hard feelings whatsoever.

I realize it's harder to have that discussion if someone is going to jump to "wrong" and "offensive" right away. However, for someone in the "inner circle" of family (for me, parents, siblings, grandparents plus SOs) I would rather have that conversation, where I make it clear they're welcome and then have them actively opt-out if they prefer, than assume in my own head which way they'll go and possibly cause deep hurt and disappointment at being excluded.

Also, I don't think that "family" should always go above "friends." I know a lot of people who are closer to their friends than to their family. It's just that in this case, it seems more clear which friends would appreciate the ceremony and which wouldn't; while the family is more ambiguous, so they need special attention.
~Lynn2000

Sterling

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #23 on: October 08, 2014, 07:56:53 PM »
While most people are correct that generally speaking you pick the venue that can accommodate the guest list in this case it really isn't that simple.

As someone who shares Nuit's religion the venue is pretty specific.  It isn't as easy as finding a random hotel or hall.  The location is pretty limited.  Unless you have the money to completely build a new temple space you can't just pick a bigger location.  My husband and I actually did build an entire set up at a pretty high cost.  But even then we had to walk the hotel's wedding planner through our ceremony and get permission to even hold the ceremony at their location.  They agreed thankfully but at least one other location objected and would not host the event.

Furthermore my sister in law freaked out and made a huge stink about the ceremony even though she had been fully educated on the ceremony before she agreed to attend.

It is a very complicated issue to try and resolve.
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cicero

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Re: Ceremony venue with limited space--who to invite?
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2014, 04:45:41 AM »
I Also like gellchom's system. I also think that people may have voiced discomfort or opposition to your belief which may have nothing to do with their desire to celebrate your wedding ceremony with you. I know that sounds like a contradiction, but I've seen this in my extended family, e.g., cousin who "left the fikd" to marry a non Jewish person. Parents tried to prevent the marriage, because marrying a non Jew is a big no-no. However, once it was clear that this was going to happen, the parents embraced the situation. I think ( in that particular case), not having the parents/siblings at the ceremony would have furthered the divide instead of mending fences.

Ultimately of course, it is your decision. But personally I wouldn't make the decision of a venue based on what you *think* your relatives' reactions are going to be.

And congrats!!

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