Post # 1
Calling all Catholic brides who are getting married or have gotten married in CT!
I need help! I really want to have a Saturday evening reception and have found my reception venue which has my wedding date open, but the problem is the church. My side of the family is very Catholic and want us to have a Catholic mass for the ceremony (which I’m fine with). My fiance is Episcopal, but not really practicing, so he doesn’t really care if we have a Catholic mass either. The problem is that I can’t find a church in Connecticut that will marry after 2PM (and Saturday evening receptions generally start around 6:30PM and go until midnight). If I have to get married at 2PM, guests will have 3 1/2 hours between the ceremony and the reception which is pretty ridiculous. Does anyone have any ideas or have you found a way to work around this? Let me know and thank you for your help!!!!!
Post # 3
I’m getting married in CA but my fiance’s family is coming from the Boston area. We too have an early Catholic mass and the dreaded 2+ hour lag. Since many of his family members have never been to CA, I’m thinking of hiring a trolley/bus to give the guests a quick tour of the LA area until the reception starts.
Also, because our ceremony will be close to where many of my side of the wedding lives, as well as the hotel where many of our guests will be staying, we may just encourage people to go home and relax before the reception.
Post # 4
Ah, you have hit upon the eternal scheduling problem of catholic weddings on Saturdays! There’s always going to be a vigil service around 5 p.m., so 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. are the usual wedding times. You might be able to find some places that would do a 7 p.m. wedding; however, I chose against this because I thought it would have the reception too late into the evening.
If there’s a big break in the afternoon, the world keeps turning, your wedding will go on. People will still come to your reception. My wedding was in the fall, with a 2 p.m. ceremony and 5:30 reception, and everyone went back to the hotel and watched the football game and drank beer in the hotel bar in the meantime. Turns out they had a fabulous time!
Lots of people will try to make you think it’s the end of the world to have a break in between the ceremony and reception but there’s another substantial contingent who’ve done it and lived to tell the tale! It’s very common with catholic weddings. I would just go with it.
Post # 5
Chances are that at least your family (being so Catholic) will be used to the gap too. And if all else fails, some people might skip the ceremony and go to the reception. Life goes on. I would do the best you can, but don’t stress too much.
Post # 6
I don’t know how attached you are to your church, but have you checked out other parishes? I, too, live in CA & our church will change the location of an afternoon mass for a nuptial mass – the mass still takes place, but you can have your nuptial mass in the church. I’d check out other parishes & talk to the pastor of each to see what he will do.
Conversely, in Hawaii, where I’m from, this kind of lag time is not unusual. So many of my friends do something similar to what Gabriela suggested – they have an activity that the Out of Town guests can partake in that shares the local flavor of your wedding location, usually in the form of a luau show without the food or a live band playing at a local restaurant or bar. Or you could share info on local points of interest that can be visited within a 3 hour time limit, maybe add it to your invite.
Post # 7
Are you, or you family, close to the Pastor of your church? Our wedding is supposed to be at 2pm, but we were able to get Msgr to push it back to 3pm. My Fiance and his family have been in the parish a while and they have gotten to be close with him. It wouldn’t hurt to ask-especially if you are close to the priest!!
Post # 8
check your area for chapels. Catholic schools and universities all have chapels and during the summer most of them don’t have weekly mass, especially not Sat. evening mass, so you’d be able to have an evening ceremony.