(Closed) FFIL prayer before meal concern (LONG)

posted 4 years ago in Secular
Post # 46
1304 posts
Bumble bee


Well he’s shown you what he intends to do if given the microphone and spotlight. So don’t give it to him.

Even if you gave him a set prayer to read, he’s intent on going off on his own script. 

Post # 47
7159 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2016

I think it was great that you planned to have your Future Father-In-Law offer a prayer. You’ve gotten some really good responses from previous posters but I just wanted to add- for the sake of practicality and lowering your own stress as you approach your wedding- don’t have him speak if he can’t speak to everyone who is there- and it sounds like he refuses to do that.

It would suck to spend the rest of your planning time with this hanging over you. It would suck to have your day impacted by this if he did somehow  manage to get his little hate speech heard. I’d let him know that your wedding day is about love and welcoming and sharing with your communities and since he feels strongly about saying something that would be harmful to people in your community, he may not give his prayer.

Post # 48
836 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

My hubby’s gram did something similar. She ruined shit by going on in her speech about how women should be subservient to men. I’ve not allowed her in my house since. It was rude. And her own hubby cheats on her often so it’s like wtf. I wish you luck OP. 

Post # 49
3042 posts
Sugar bee

It was a gracious gesture to invite your Future Father-In-Law to lead a prayer during the reception, but I’m afraid he’s made it clear that he has a political/social agenda.  I think you need to rescind the offer, as I don’t think you can trust him to keep from saying something that not only will offend you, but will also offend your guests.  (And as other have pointed out, your guests are likely to believe he is speaking “for you”.)

Perhaps something like, “FFIL, we’ve been discussing it, and we’ve determined it would be best if we had Reverend Brown/Cousin Martha/whoever do the prayer before the meal.”

I think you also need to discuss how you’re going to handle it if he “goes rogue” and finds a way to get the microphone/stands up and starts giving a sermon.  Maybe discuss with your DJ and have your DJ prepared to play music to drown him out? (Yes, I realize this is a contentious idea, but it’s also pretty unforgivable for a wedding guest to be treated to a sermon demonizing their identity.) 

Even if he promises “oh, I won’t say those things, just a quick little blessing over the food” I’d be wary that he would go rogue.

Good Luck. This is going to be a hard situation to handle.  

Post # 50
4226 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom

I think it was a very kind gesture to ask him to say a prayer.

However, now that he has given you a ‘teaser’, and I get the vibe he isn’t willing to compromise, I’d retract my offer…but make sure he understands why. I’d also make sure the DJ knows he isn’t permitted a microphone to speak.

Post # 51
4226 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom

I just wanted to share this comic to inject a little humor in this tense moment:

Post # 52
184 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: February 2017

View original reply
underblueskies1016 :  a specific/approved blessing or passage(s)is exactly what I’d suggest. My Fiance isn’t particularly religious – I’m even less so. Both our families are with the exception of my father, the officiant, who isn’t Christian and only moderately spiritual. 

That said, we’ve considered having scriptures incorporated that are aligned with what we actually believe. *As a two bride wedding, I can assure you that no one will be proselytizing about one man/one woman marriage at our event 😉 *

I think it’s incredibly thoughtful and gracious of you to acknowledge the religious convictions of your families while still considering your guest’s feelings and being cognizant about not upsetting  anyone. I also understand how he might be angry or hurt if you basically renege on your offer about the prayer.

If you don’t feel comfortable completely taking back your request of offering a prayer, maybe provide a few scriptures you like, give him a timeline of the day (so he knows he only has 5 minutes or whatever) and remind him that your ceremony should reflect YOUR *bride and groom* feelings/thoughts on love and marriage, regardless of his religious beliefs to the contrary.  You also may want to bring up the fact that the reception-if that is where he is going to do the prayer-is meant to be the bride and groom’s thank you to their guests for attending the wedding and as a gracious host, you don’t feel comfortable potentially upsetting or offending your guests at an event that should be considered your gift to them.

Post # 53
9535 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

write out the prayer you want him to read.  do you have a standard or generic prayer?

in the jewish religion, there is a specific prayer that it said before meals.  it is short and to the point,.  it translates to

Our praise to You, Eternal our God, Sovereign of the universe,
Who brings forth bread from the earth

could you do something like that?

we had my great uncle say the hamotzi (in hebrew) before dinner was served. this is pretty standard for jewish weddings.

Post # 55
799 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

I think you should sit him down and talk to him. Let him know that you have friends who are attending that will get offended by that statement. Also ask him “By praying that will you really be showing Jesus’ love?” As Christians it is not our place to judge, but to love as Christ has loved us. Really get him thinking on that statement. 

Post # 56
816 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Based on his reaction I would not allow him to say a prayer because you can’t trust him not to turn it into a sermon about marriage.  Is the potential risk to your wedding day worth it for both of you?  If not I’d get another person to say a prayer that is more akin to what you are looking for if you want to incorporate that element into your wedding.

Post # 57
4835 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

View original reply
underblueskies1016 :  I would tell him that your wedding is not a place to make divisive statements and if he wants to preach he should become a minister/ priest and find a congregation. The day is about you as a couple and to celebrate love and the joining of two people and their friends and families. All his religious talk will take away from that and as a good Christian he should not want to upset or hurt those who already feel marginalized in society. 

If he can’t keep his thoughts to a prayer that

A) blesses you as a couple

B) acknowledges the commitment you’ve made

C) thanks the lord for the meal you are to share

Then tell him you no longer want him to do the prayer. You can just ask someone else to do it if you still wish to include it. 

Post # 58
1489 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

You CANNOT let him do the prayer unless he swears he won’t say that. Honestly, I wouldn’t even risk it and tell him that the prayer is now off the table. Have him do a reading during the ceremony or something instead, if you must, but I’d keep him from speaking at all now.

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