Reception Ideas

Purpose of a Wedding Reception?

I had a friend yesterday ask me if we would be offended if he didn't want to come to the wedding and only came to the reception. His excuse was - "I hate going to church and I might burst into flames if I walk in the door. Can I just come to your reception and eat and drink?" I told him that I wouldn't be offended (I don't get offended too easily) but that the whole purpose of a WEDDING RECEPTION is for FI and I to thank the people who came to celebrate our wedding with us. So...if he didn't come to the wedding then why are we thanking him by giving him free food and an open bar? He said we would be thanking him for giving us a gift. 

I kind of see both sides? I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway. I guess it just got me thinking...the reception is where we get to see and spend time with our friends and family and if he (or anyone) hates the idea of spending at hour at church then so be it. However, I do know that *technically* the reception is to thank the wedding guests. But I also see what he's saying that if he decides to get us a gift, he wouldn't have to feel bad for not coming to the wedding itself right? So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? Or is it rude to only show up to the reception? 
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Re: Purpose of a Wedding Reception?

  • I don't really agree.   The gift isn't to be brought to the reception and in his logic, your reception TY to him would then need to be of similar value to his gift if the idea is that you're giving people food and drinks and entertainment in exchange for things.   And we've beaten that dead horse enough to know that a gift is not to be used as 'payment for attending the reception.'

    I kind of call bullshit on your friend.   You're getting married.   If it's in your house of worship I'd hope that he respects it enough to attend.   It's not about his participation and necessarily believing in the worship - it's supporting the life changing event taking place in front of his face.  


    OurWildKingdomMobKazDrillSergeantCat
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
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    edited September 2016
    I am one who didn't give a shit if someone came to the ceremony or not.  And mine wasn't even in a church.      The ceremony was about DH and I. It's not like I took attendance and would have known anyway.   

    I know one of my cousins missed the ceremony because of work.   No big deal to me as he got off work then then drove 3 hours to make it to the reception.   Good enough for me.

    I also didn't care of my guests were only coming for free food and booze.  Fact is our wedding was OOT for everyone.  If they took time out of their busy schedule, drove the 3-5 hours, got a hotel room for at least one night just to get free booze, dinner and dancing, okay.   No problem. Happy to entertain them.


    I get getting a little miffed, but unlike others, it's to something I give much thought.  I like entertaining my guests and do not feel the need to force them to witness something they do not want in order to get the free booze, food and entertainment.  When I sent the invitation it was for them to attend any or all parts of the day they choose.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    charlotte989875
  • FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    InLoveInQueensOurWildKingdomSP29MobKaz
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    edited September 2016
    banana468 said:
    FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    That would annoy me too. I'm not offended if people can't make it because they had scheduling conflicts or logistical issues, but if it's because "they're just not into religion" or something like that it disrespects my beliefs and my friendship.

    Attending a religious wedding does not equal agreeing with the religious beliefs or conversion, so the truly gracious thing to do would be to suck it up for the short period of time during one day when the ceremony is taking place.
    OurWildKingdomdowntondiva
  • I completely agree. I know that I won't notice (or actually care!) who actually attends the ceremony itself. I'll be too focused on getting married! It was more just the flippant question itself that made me wonder about it. I just wasn't really sure how to respond to him! I told him he was more than welcome at both but if he can at least come to the reception we'd love to have him. I guess from reading some of these boards everyone always says that the ceremony is the ceremony and the reception is FI's and my way of saying thank you for being a witness to our marriage (at the ceremony). Have some food, the bar is open to you, now dance the night away! We aren't asking for gifts or even registering anywhere. So anything we may receive will be very nice and appreciated but it just seemed weird for him to be like - yeah.........church isn't really my thing.........I'll come eat and drink on your dime though! I don't know. Either way, it's nothing that will keep me up at night. Just wasn't sure what the consensus was on something like that because I have a feeling we'll have more than just him with that attitude so I'd like a canned response if it gets asked again. In more important news - I'm getting married in 23 days!!!!!!!!!! 
    OurWildKingdomSP29
  • Jen4948 said:
    banana468 said:
    FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    That would annoy me too. I'm not offended if people can't make it because they had scheduling conflicts or logistical issues, but if it's because "they're just not into religion" or something like that it disrespects my beliefs and my friendship.

    Attending a religious wedding does not equal agreeing with the religious beliefs or conversion, so the truly gracious thing to do would be to suck it up for the short period of time during one day when the ceremony is taking place.
    Exactly.   I don't want to hear that you're annoyed I had a church wedding anymore than another person may want to hear me say that I'm annoyed that they had a DW.   Attend or don't attend - leave the commentary out of it. 
    OurWildKingdom
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
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    banana468 said:
    FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    I totally understand your point of view.      

    I'm not a fan of churches at all.  And I grew up in Catholic churches.    

     These feelings are 100% mine and have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  In no way do I feel the couple is creating a hassle for having a church wedding. I do not roll my eyes at church weddings at all.  The ceremony is 100% about the couple and if that is what they want, I 100% support their choice.   

    That said, it doesn't mean I'm going to be comfortable.   I suck it up and attend church weddings but it makes me very uncomfortable. Almost panic attack level.   Even witnessing the joy in my friends/family faces never overrides how uncomfortable I feel in the church.   I can't get out fast enough.

    I understand why others do not understand how someone can have such strong feelings over a building and/or religion, but trust me these feelings are very real.  But again have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  

    If I could get away with not attending a church wedding and go to the reception I would do it on a heartbeat.   The people pleaser in me doesn't  skip the ceremony in a church so I end up spending an hour+ being uncomfortable instead.    I do not fault people who choose other wise.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • lyndausvi said:
    banana468 said:
    FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    I totally understand your point of view.      

    I'm not a fan of churches at all.  And I grew up in Catholic churches.    

     These feelings are 100% mine and have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  In no way do I feel the couple is creating a hassle for having a church wedding. I do not roll my eyes at church weddings at all.  The ceremony is 100% about the couple and if that is what they want, I 100% support their choice.   

    That said, it doesn't mean I'm going to be comfortable.   I suck it up and attend church weddings but it makes me very uncomfortable. Almost panic attack level.   Even witnessing the joy in my friends/family faces never overrides how uncomfortable I feel in the church.   I can't get out fast enough.

    I understand why others do not understand how someone can have such strong feelings over a building and/or religion, but trust me these feelings are very real.  But again have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  

    If I could get away with not attending a church wedding and go to the reception I would do it on a heartbeat.   The people pleaser in me doesn't  skip the ceremony in a church so I end up spending an hour+ being uncomfortable instead.    I do not fault people who choose other wise.

    I feel very similarly. Honestly, if he had just privately made the decision not to attend because of his own comfort level I wouldn't have as big of a problem, but OPs friend telling OP essentially "I don't like your ceremony so I'm not coming" and I think that's rude. 
    InLoveInQueensILoveBeachMusicSTARMOON44MairePoppy
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
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    lyndausvi said:
    banana468 said:
    FWIW, I can't really remember who attended just the reception.

    But what would miff me is if I was greeted with the attitude that the ceremony was a hassle in some way because it was in a church.

    If a friend/family member didn't attend because of logistics it's no skin of my back.   It's when I hear, "But I'm just not into church," that I roll my eyes.    

    Does that make sense?   


    I totally understand your point of view.      

    I'm not a fan of churches at all.  And I grew up in Catholic churches.    

     These feelings are 100% mine and have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  In no way do I feel the couple is creating a hassle for having a church wedding. I do not roll my eyes at church weddings at all.  The ceremony is 100% about the couple and if that is what they want, I 100% support their choice.   

    That said, it doesn't mean I'm going to be comfortable.   I suck it up and attend church weddings but it makes me very uncomfortable. Almost panic attack level.   Even witnessing the joy in my friends/family faces never overrides how uncomfortable I feel in the church.   I can't get out fast enough.

    I understand why others do not understand how someone can have such strong feelings over a building and/or religion, but trust me these feelings are very real.  But again have nothing to do with the couple themselves.  

    If I could get away with not attending a church wedding and go to the reception I would do it on a heartbeat.   The people pleaser in me doesn't  skip the ceremony in a church so I end up spending an hour+ being uncomfortable instead.    I do not fault people who choose other wise.

    I feel very similarly. Honestly, if he had just privately made the decision not to attend because of his own comfort level I wouldn't have as big of a problem, but OPs friend telling OP essentially "I don't like your ceremony so I'm not coming" and I think that's rude. 
    I think people are reading way more into this than there is.

    His excuse was - "I hate going to church and I might burst into flames if I walk in the door. Can I just come to your reception and eat and drink?" 


    He was trying to make light of his uncomfortableness being inside a church by saying he might burst into flames.  He didn't say the OP sucks for having a church wedding.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    charlotte989875OurWildKingdomSTARMOON44lc07
  • FeelTheRainFeelTheRain
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    edited September 2016
    Edit - He doesn't actually care or is offended by the church. He just doesn't want to come and sit though an hour long mass. Is it boring as a guest who's not either A) used to the length of a catholic mass, or, B ) our parents? Yes, absolutely. And hour long wedding ceremony can be frightfully dull. I get it. His deal is like a 12 year old not wanting to go to his sister's dance recital. He isn't upset...he just literally doesn't want to. But he wants to come eat and drink and party. It just feels tacky. He can and he will and I won't say anything to him...I just want to know what a good answer is if anybody else says "Hey - I don't want to sit through a whole hour. Can I just come to the reception for the fun part?" 
    OurWildKingdomPrettyGirlLost
  • I don't think it is that big of a deal! He is coming to celebrated with you at the reception. I know DD had at least one person not come to the ceremony but came to the reception because he had two weddings that day. There were a lot of college friends at the wedding so he came to the reception so he could spend time partying with college friends. I understand that the reception is a thank you to guests, but maybe this is taking it a bit too far saying it isn't right that someone would come eat and drink for free but not attend the ceremony. I do agree that your friend shouldn't have told you why he couldn't make the ceremony - seems kind of childish to me.
    STARMOON44ShesSoCold
  • But, you like this friend enough to invite him, right?  So, I'm guessing his "I hate the boring part" isn't something surprising about his personality.  This friend (that you like enough out of many friends and family options) to invite to celebrate with you, is just being him ... I'm guessing.  When I got married, a couple DH friends not only didn't attend the ceremony, but, I'm pretty sure they weren't hip to the wedding gift thing either.  :-)  We laughed, and enjoyed our day!  Now, we have a fun story to share with them.  

    Enjoy your wedding, and have a blast at your reception!  
  • I'm going to quote myself here really quickly as the OP since this post has gotten so incredibly, massively, wildly out of control:

    I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway....So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? 

    - I won't notice (or actually care!) who actually attends the ceremony itself. I'll be too focused on getting married! It was more just the flippant question itself that made me wonder about it. I just wasn't really sure how to respond to him! I told him he was more than welcome at both but if he can at least come to the reception we'd love to have him.

    - Edit - He doesn't actually care or is offended by the church. He just doesn't want to come and sit though an hour long mass. His deal is like a 12 year old not wanting to go to his sister's dance recital. He isn't upset...he just literally doesn't want to.

    If my friend was morally/ethically/religiously opposed in any way to a church ceremony that would obviously be a different situation. I'm not trying to fight him to come to the ceremony. I'm not battling him. I'm not taking his friend card away. I was literally just asking the purpose of a reception. Choice A - to say thank you for watching our marriage. Choice B - Thanks for the gift! (follow up before anyone can be upset about the G word: the gift that we appreciate to the moon and back that we didn't ask for or expect but it's wonderful that you decided of your own accord to give to us). My only purpose of asking the question was to see if anybody else thought it was odd that a guest would be like - "No thanks for the reason for the celebration, just let me at the food and free drinks all night." Maybe it's just me. Either way, the responses just keep getting further and further away from the original question in my post so I'll call it good and just keep on telling people they're welcome to attend either if anybody else asks. 
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
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    IMO - receptions are 2 fold.

    They are a thank you to those who attend the ceremony.

    They are also a party to celebration of a marriage.

    If you have a ceremony with guests you must have a reception.  This can be a simple cake and punch reception or a full blown dinner/dancing.  

    You can also have a reception without having guests at the ceremony.   Now a lot of people on here do not like that, but it's not against etiquette to have a party celebrating your marriage for guests who didn't actually witness the ceremony.  

    The word reception is NOT exclusive to weddings.   A reception is a formal social to welcome someone or celebrate an event.

    At no time is it to thank someone for a gift.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    SP29ILoveBeachMusicMairePoppy
  • I'm going to quote myself here really quickly as the OP since this post has gotten so incredibly, massively, wildly out of control:

    I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway....So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? 

    - I won't notice (or actually care!) who actually attends the ceremony itself. I'll be too focused on getting married! It was more just the flippant question itself that made me wonder about it. I just wasn't really sure how to respond to him! I told him he was more than welcome at both but if he can at least come to the reception we'd love to have him.

    - Edit - He doesn't actually care or is offended by the church. He just doesn't want to come and sit though an hour long mass. His deal is like a 12 year old not wanting to go to his sister's dance recital. He isn't upset...he just literally doesn't want to.

    If my friend was morally/ethically/religiously opposed in any way to a church ceremony that would obviously be a different situation. I'm not trying to fight him to come to the ceremony. I'm not battling him. I'm not taking his friend card away. I was literally just asking the purpose of a reception. Choice A - to say thank you for watching our marriage. Choice B - Thanks for the gift! (follow up before anyone can be upset about the G word: the gift that we appreciate to the moon and back that we didn't ask for or expect but it's wonderful that you decided of your own accord to give to us). My only purpose of asking the question was to see if anybody else thought it was odd that a guest would be like - "No thanks for the reason for the celebration, just let me at the food and free drinks all night." Maybe it's just me. Either way, the responses just keep getting further and further away from the original question in my post so I'll call it good and just keep on telling people they're welcome to attend either if anybody else asks. 
    Are you new to the internet? People take things in all kinds of directions when you post online. By people posting their opinions (myself included) we're not inferring that is what you're doing or saying, we're adding commentary related to the original topic. So, yah some times things get away from the original question. No need to get upset by that. 
  • I'm a brat because the majority of you are exhausting. You can't just come on here and ask a simple question without everyone taking it out of context and running with it. The majority of these boards spiral out of control. I asked a question expecting an answer to the question. Not an answer to some random thought somebody had after everybody played a game of Telephone with the original post. Apparently expecting an actual conversation about my actual topic makes me new to the internet. I give up. Not all of you but the vast majority are too much for me to handle. Wedding planning isn't a contact blood sport fyi. Sometimes it would be nice to be in a forum of people who don't dig and poke and prod until they feel better about themselves by belittling others. I would encourage everyone to just a step back and remember the point of all this. Stop making these posts a "who offended who better" competition. Guess what, you all win. I wish this site had been as fun and uplifting as it should have been. Have fun with your catty replies to this post BTW. It should hopefully feed your egos until the next post comes along for you to rip apart. I applaud you all for your stamina in snark. It's been a lovely learning experience, truly. 
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
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    umm, I answered your question.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    charlotte989875sparklepants41PrettyGirlLost
  • CMGragainCMGragain
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    edited September 2016
    I had a friend yesterday ask me if we would be offended if he didn't want to come to the wedding and only came to the reception. His excuse was - "I hate going to church and I might burst into flames if I walk in the door. Can I just come to your reception and eat and drink?" I told him that I wouldn't be offended (I don't get offended too easily) but that the whole purpose of a WEDDING RECEPTION is for FI and I to thank the people who came to celebrate our wedding with us. So...if he didn't come to the wedding then why are we thanking him by giving him free food and an open bar? He said we would be thanking him for giving us a gift. 

    I kind of see both sides? I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway. I guess it just got me thinking...the reception is where we get to see and spend time with our friends and family and if he (or anyone) hates the idea of spending at hour at church then so be it. However, I do know that *technically* the reception is to thank the wedding guests. But I also see what he's saying that if he decides to get us a gift, he wouldn't have to feel bad for not coming to the wedding itself right? So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? Or is it rude to only show up to the reception? 
    OP, here is your post and your question.  You received many answers.  Now you are having a hissy fit instead of thanking people for taking the trouble to advise you.
    You are welcome.

    Some of the guests at my own wedding were conservative jews.  I doubt they were comfortable in a Methodist Church, but they came to witness my ceremony because they cared about me.
    My daughter's wedding was also in a Methodist church, and most of her friends were not Christians, either.  Some were Pagan, one was Jewish, and many were atheists.  They came because they cared about both her and her FI, and wanted to witness the ceremony.
    You do not need to share religious beliefs with someone in order to join them as guests at their wedding ceremony.  I think your friend is full of bullshit.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    MobKaz
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs
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    Edit - He doesn't actually care or is offended by the church. He just doesn't want to come and sit though an hour long mass. Is it boring as a guest who's not either A) used to the length of a catholic mass, or, B ) our parents? Yes, absolutely. And hour long wedding ceremony can be frightfully dull. I get it. His deal is like a 12 year old not wanting to go to his sister's dance recital. He isn't upset...he just literally doesn't want to. But he wants to come eat and drink and party. It just feels tacky. He can and he will and I won't say anything to him...I just want to know what a good answer is if anybody else says "Hey - I don't want to sit through a whole hour. Can I just come to the reception for the fun part?" 
    I'd suggest that he skip dinner as well.  That will also require him to sit for a good hour.
    ThisShamanluvsaMageSP29PrettyGirlLost
  • julieanne912julieanne912
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    edited September 2016
    Your friend sounds like a dick.  I took his comments to mean he really doesn't care about your wedding, he just wants to party.  Now, that's how some people are about weddings (prefer to just go for the party part), but the fact he'd say it to you is pretty rude.  

    The purpose of a reception, to me, is different depending on your role.  As a bride and groom, the reception is to thank your guests for coming to support you and celebrate with you.  As a guest, it's to celebrate and support the bride and groom.  By him saying he can't deal with sitting still for an hour, to support you and your FI, makes him seem pretty unsupportive and not that great of a friend.
    Married 9.12.15
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    SP29PrettyGirlLostCMGragain
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    CMGragain said:
    I had a friend yesterday ask me if we would be offended if he didn't want to come to the wedding and only came to the reception. His excuse was - "I hate going to church and I might burst into flames if I walk in the door. Can I just come to your reception and eat and drink?" I told him that I wouldn't be offended (I don't get offended too easily) but that the whole purpose of a WEDDING RECEPTION is for FI and I to thank the people who came to celebrate our wedding with us. So...if he didn't come to the wedding then why are we thanking him by giving him free food and an open bar? He said we would be thanking him for giving us a gift. 

    I kind of see both sides? I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway. I guess it just got me thinking...the reception is where we get to see and spend time with our friends and family and if he (or anyone) hates the idea of spending at hour at church then so be it. However, I do know that *technically* the reception is to thank the wedding guests. But I also see what he's saying that if he decides to get us a gift, he wouldn't have to feel bad for not coming to the wedding itself right? So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? Or is it rude to only show up to the reception? 
    OP, here is your post and your question.  You received many answers.  Now you are having a hissy fit instead of thanking people for taking the trouble to advise you.
    You are welcome.

    Some of the guests at my own wedding were conservative jews.  I doubt they were comfortable in a Methodist Church, but they came to witness my ceremony because they cared about me.
    My daughter's wedding was also in a Methodist church, and most of her friends were not Christians, either.  Some were Pagan, one was Jewish, and many were atheists.  They came because they cared about both her and her FI, and wanted to witness the ceremony.
    You do not need to share religious beliefs with someone in order to join them as guests at their wedding ceremony.  I think your friend is full of bullshit.
    You also couldn't possibly know his rationale for feeling uncomfortable in a church. Maybe he was abused by a priest, maybe he belongs to a community the church is actively fighting against and demonising. You have no idea if something traumatic happened to this person. I think snapping to quick judgements is bullshit. 

    The point of this is a friend is trying not to make a fuss (and yes, make light of the situation) but is saying "I'm really uncomfortable in a Catholic Church". This is allegedly your friend. Maybe treat him like one and trust his judgement. If he says he is uncomfortable, you allegedly say you don't care and won't notice- act like it! 

    Dismissing them as disrespectful and not caring about you when they've tried to say "I'm really uncomfortable" is completely attention seeking and frankly, very unChristian. 
    I agree somewhat -- but I think there's a difference between saying "I'm not into church" and "I'm really uncomfortable in a house of worship for a specific denomination."

    That said, I think a true friend can respect that being invited to attend someone's wedding at a house of worship doesn't equal being asked to convert to that religion or to agree with all its practices -- just to attend and keep one's own mouth shut about whatever differences one has with the religion in question for the short period of time that the ceremony will take place. Attending a wedding ceremony at, say, a Catholic church doesn't equal endorsing abuse of children by priests.
    OurWildKingdomSP29CMGragain
  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK
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    Jen4948 said:
    CMGragain said:
    I had a friend yesterday ask me if we would be offended if he didn't want to come to the wedding and only came to the reception. His excuse was - "I hate going to church and I might burst into flames if I walk in the door. Can I just come to your reception and eat and drink?" I told him that I wouldn't be offended (I don't get offended too easily) but that the whole purpose of a WEDDING RECEPTION is for FI and I to thank the people who came to celebrate our wedding with us. So...if he didn't come to the wedding then why are we thanking him by giving him free food and an open bar? He said we would be thanking him for giving us a gift. 

    I kind of see both sides? I honestly don't care if he doesn't come to the wedding, I won't even notice if he's not there and it's nothing that I would be upset about anyway. I guess it just got me thinking...the reception is where we get to see and spend time with our friends and family and if he (or anyone) hates the idea of spending at hour at church then so be it. However, I do know that *technically* the reception is to thank the wedding guests. But I also see what he's saying that if he decides to get us a gift, he wouldn't have to feel bad for not coming to the wedding itself right? So is the purpose of the reception to thank someone for celebrating our actual wedding with us? Or is it rude to only show up to the reception? 
    OP, here is your post and your question.  You received many answers.  Now you are having a hissy fit instead of thanking people for taking the trouble to advise you.
    You are welcome.

    Some of the guests at my own wedding were conservative jews.  I doubt they were comfortable in a Methodist Church, but they came to witness my ceremony because they cared about me.
    My daughter's wedding was also in a Methodist church, and most of her friends were not Christians, either.  Some were Pagan, one was Jewish, and many were atheists.  They came because they cared about both her and her FI, and wanted to witness the ceremony.
    You do not need to share religious beliefs with someone in order to join them as guests at their wedding ceremony.  I think your friend is full of bullshit.
    You also couldn't possibly know his rationale for feeling uncomfortable in a church. Maybe he was abused by a priest, maybe he belongs to a community the church is actively fighting against and demonising. You have no idea if something traumatic happened to this person. I think snapping to quick judgements is bullshit. 

    The point of this is a friend is trying not to make a fuss (and yes, make light of the situation) but is saying "I'm really uncomfortable in a Catholic Church". This is allegedly your friend. Maybe treat him like one and trust his judgement. If he says he is uncomfortable, you allegedly say you don't care and won't notice- act like it! 

    Dismissing them as disrespectful and not caring about you when they've tried to say "I'm really uncomfortable" is completely attention seeking and frankly, very unChristian. 
    I agree somewhat -- but I think there's a difference between saying "I'm not into church" and "I'm really uncomfortable in a house of worship for a specific denomination."

    That said, I think a true friend can respect that being invited to attend someone's wedding at a house of worship doesn't equal being asked to convert to that religion or to agree with all its practices -- just to attend and keep one's own mouth shut about whatever differences one has with the religion in question for the short period of time that the ceremony will take place. Attending a wedding ceremony at, say, a Catholic church doesn't equal endorsing abuse of children by priests.
    Look, all OP has done is whinge and moan about this 'friend' which makes me just think: why did you invite them? If they are constantly acting immature and disinterested, why did you expect them to change? Or is it just this one thing this one time? 

    Former? Let them go as a friend. Latter? Cut them some slack and let it go. 

    But if you say you don't care, act like it. 

    OurWildKingdomcharlotte989875SP29climbingwife
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