Wedding 911

Guess what? EVERYONE'S INVITED! *sob*

I sure hope someone can figure out what I should do with this situation, because I'm at my wit's end. 

I work as a youth pastor, and accordingly invited my youth kids and their parents to the wedding (it's a pretty small church), as well as the on-staff pastors. I also spread the word subtly that we couldn't invite everyone we wanted, etc., and did all invites directly to homes so there would be no confusion. To be honest, I'm pretty certain a large portion of the congregation had no idea when I was getting married, and only a vague idea that I was engaged. Until Sunday, that is. 

From what I understand, there was a general announcement at the very end of service on Sunday, which announced that I'm getting married this Saturday, at X location. It's a nice, sentiment, right? Well the problem is that in our culture in the US, it's extremely common to invite your whole church to the ceremony followed by a luncheon cooked by the church ladies. No formal invitations, no RSVPs, nothing except time, date and location. It's common enough that some of my kids have never been to a wedding that wasn't like that. And I had no clue the announcement was made until an older congregant asked me where the hotel is, because they had never been there before. 

So now I'm really worried that people will just show up, assuming that they're invited, because it might not have occurred to them that they're not invited. I won't be seeing these people before the wedding, so there's precious little time for damage control, plus how do you even tackle a conversation like "oh hey, just in case you were thinking of coming, which you might not be, I just wanted to make sure you knew you're not invited." 

We will have escort cards, but many people might overlook that, and the ceremony is held at the same site as the reception so they're seated at tables, so it'll be really obvious really quickly if there's extra people. Aside from the practical part, I'm concerned that this will damage my working relationships in a job where relationships are really important. My mom suggested perhaps posting family members to act as screeners, but that doesn't really address the fact that people will be irritated, because they semi-legitimately believed that they were invited. 

There's a chance that I'm just blowing this out of proportion, but judging from the reaction of my brother (who also works at a church and has seen this happen), there's also a strong possibility that I'll just have people showing up. 

Champagne and moscato have already been applied directly to the affected areas, so if anyone has additional recommendations, please share. 

Re: Guess what? EVERYONE'S INVITED! *sob*

  • @photokitty  Oops; I'm not so good at details when I'm flustered. 

    I'm getting married at a hotel--ceremony and reception will all take place there--and your recommendation about having staff check in with guests will just have to work. 

    I'd love to speak to the pastor, but honestly he's getting a little senile in his old age and he's retiring next month, so it's a moot point to have this convo my boss, no matter how irritating this is. 


  • photokittyphotokitty where I want to be mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    rooz103 said:
    @photokitty  Oops; I'm not so good at details when I'm flustered. 

    I'm getting married at a hotel--ceremony and reception will all take place there--and your recommendation about having staff check in with guests will just have to work. 

    I'd love to speak to the pastor, but honestly he's getting a little senile in his old age and he's retiring next month, so it's a moot point to have this convo my boss, no matter how irritating this is. 


    Did he give the wedding time or just the date and location? If he didn't give the time then hopefully you are worrying needlessly. Still have the hotel staff check in guests at the door. DO not have family or friends do this task, it will reduce hurt feelings and awkwardness. GL!! :D
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • rcher912rcher912 Philadelphia member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    CMGragain said:
    Call the most gossipy biddy in the congregation.  I'm sure you know who she is - everybody does!  Tell her your worries.  She'll take it from there.
    HA!! I LOVE this advice!!!!! If it's someone you know and are comfortable with, I say totally do this. But otherwise, maybe call the hotel and see if you can set up a separate room with just punch/cookies? Make a quick appearance for thank-yous? DEFINITELY a reception line is in order, if you weren't already planning on it.

    Churches are funny places. I wish you the best of luck with this!!!!! Please let us know how it turns out!
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I have nothing to add to the good advice you've received from PPs. I just want to wish you good luck and ask you to come back and tell us how this turns out.
                       
  • Glad to hear it worked out for you! That sounded like a nightmare situation!
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