(Closed) Guests invited to Ceremony but NOT Reception okay?

posted 11 years ago in Reception
Post # 48
77 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@marci_607 – I PM’d you RE: our wording and a little more information on how we did things. Let me know if you have any questions. I hope it helps!

Post # 49
2063 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I’m struggling with the same thing right now….. I am a Pastor’s daughter, and a Bible school graduate.  Lots of connections, lots of people who have attended the whole “open church ceremony” situation… I am still considering the whole invited to ceremony, not reception… I would like to do a cake/punch ceremony, but there isn’t really a location at my church for that cake reception.  I’m so torn about what to do.  There are so many people who “can’t” be cut.  We are definitely doing an open ceremony for people in our church – Everyone feels like they know me because my dad’s the pastor, and it’s a pretty small church.  I still have others who I would really like to be at the ceremony, but we are limited due to the size of our reception venue.

Post # 50
158 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

Well Im doing this but my situaion is a little different. My friends are young and we basically told them straight up…My family is huge and Ic ant afford to pay for everyone…im a social worker. We would LOVe for you to witness our ceremony though if you would like to share with hus…It worked adn as far as I know, there havent been many hurt feelings. I think any situation can be worked through as long as everyone is aware….but again my situation is a lil different i think from most of the PP

Post # 51
1 posts

My husband is a pastor and his congregation would be devastated if they were not able to watch our daughter who grew up in the church get married.  A wedding invitation is even going into the church bulletin.  The wedding ceremony will be open, however the wedding program will state “Closed Reception” and those who received the actual invite will be the only ones who know where the reception is being held, so we hope not to have any wedding crashers.  There was not a way to not have someone’s feelings hurt.  So we decided that we would rather them be hurt because they were not inluded in the second half of the wedding (reception) than that their feelings are hurt because they were not included at all.

It’s our way of not allowing money to dictate those who want to witness a joyous event of two people whom they care about becoming man and wife.

Not one person in that congregation would think that he should have invited and paid for the ENTIRE congregation of 400 to be at the reception.  Not one.

Post # 52
16 posts
  • Wedding: September 2012

Ok Bees!  I am in the EXACT position as a lot of you on THIS VERY topic…I have been going to my church for over 16 years-my father is a deacon, and my mom is an usher… I really want to go for the open ceremony and closed reception…out of a desire to share my special day with my church family that has loved, supported , and prayed for me most of my life.  I KNOW not everyone from church ( over 500 members in the church alone!)   will be invited to reception, just selected close friends of mine and my parents…

I need to know from the ” now married Bees” how the whole open ceremony, closed reception concept played itself out in reality?  Any drama? Any reception crashers?  Did you have any cake/ punch reception that day vs a few weeks later ?..  I just want to prepare myself…  What were your experiences?  

Post # 53
7899 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

I would only invited with formal invitations those people that you want at teh reception, but then you can circulate around your church by word of mouth that anyone is welcome to attend the service. Many churches require that the service to open to the entire congregation, but members usually aren’t in the habit of jsut randomly showing up to weddings. That way, you have made absolutely no one you aren’t invitiving to the entire affair beholden to give ou a gift, but if people from the community want to see the ceremony, they can.

Post # 53
295 posts
Helper bee

Not inviting people to the reception is the rudest and tackiest thing ever. Did your Mother teach you any manners at all?

Post # 54
20 posts

Wedding are extremely expensive and I’ve been one of those who werent invited because family comes first. Honestly it hurt more knowing I couldn’t see my friend get married instead of being invited to a party because of etiquette. If I had a voice I would say being honored to see the ceremony was enough for me.

Post # 55
2141 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

here in the UK church weddings are open so parishioners, locals etc… can attend but they cant then just invite themselves to the reception – they watch the ceremony then leave (same sometimes happens at funerals)

reception comes in 2 parts

breakfast for close family and friends

evening reception for co-workers, cousins, neighbors etc…

its entirely common to have people attend ceremony only or evening only… people who attend the breakfast are day guest and usually attend all

Post # 56
2849 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2016

View original reply
fluffybiscuit :  This thread was 6 years old….

Post # 57
1183 posts
Bumble bee

we (like many of our friends) put a notice in the church notices when we announced the wedding inviting members of our church family to join us at the ceremony if they would like to. 

Invitations only went to guests who were invited to the ceremony and reception or evening guests (UK where having evening guests is normal). 

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