Modern weddings threaten marriage?

Are modern weddings a threat to marriage? The BBC online quotes Giles Fraser's recent comments on the issue. What's your take?

A marriage made in hell?
From the BBC online


Has "an atmosphere of narcissism and self-promotion" worked its way into the idea of the modern wedding celebration?

Perhaps the thought won't be in the forefront of the minds of the thousands of people wending their way to churches, town halls and marquees around the country this weekend.

But as wedding guests shake confetti from their clothes or tie ties around heads on the dance floor, they might reflect on the purpose of the big day.

The criticism was levelled by Rev Dr Giles Fraser, Canon Chancellor of St Paul's Cathedral, rippling the usually placid waters of the Today programme's Thought for he Day with concerns that that "too many modern weddings have just lost their way".

"I'd even say that they've become a threat to marriage itself," he added, arguing that the idea of self-sacrifice is lost when the ceremony is "specifically designed to be all about 'me', about being a 'princess for a day'".

Comments (2)

Fraser has a point. I'd even go so far to say that the aesthetics of many contemporary weddings are sexist, because the focus is so heavily cast on the bride, from the initial planning to the "big day," that the groom seems an irrelevant prop elbowed to the side. Not exactly a good way to mark the union of two people into a self-giving union of mutual commitment and decision-making, in which both count!

Gregory Orloff

In light of the Prop 8 decision yesterday, I'm aware that in the US I must distinguish between the state's secular concern for marriage and our sacramental beliefs -- personal belief, hope, religion, morality is not the purvue of the law. So I see Fraser's point being relative to the church. The English dilemma is that all citizens are entitled to the ministry of the church -- not in the US.

Curt- please sign your last name next time you comment. ed.

Add your comments

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

Reminder: At Episcopal Café, we hope to establish an ethic of transparency by requiring all contributors and commentators to make submissions under their real names. For more details see our Feedback Policy.

Advertising Space