Thoughts on a catholic gap?

posted 2 years ago in Catholic
Post # 31
Member
1078 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

I think it all comes down to what you’re used to. Every time this question comes up around here, there are the “OMG it’s no big deal” people and the “OMG it’s awful” people, but I think it’s all based on what people are accustomed to as wedding guests (for example, I fall under the “it’s awful” category, but it’s simply because I have never been to a wedding with anything more than an hour or so gap. It’s not the norm to me, so my knee-jerk reaction to waiting around 3 hours in between is “hell no!” BUT… if. I were in a different social circle, would I still feel that way? Probably not)

I think you just need to accept that, for the people who are used to it, it won’t be a big deal. For the people who aren’t, they’ll probably secretly be annoyed at the inconvenience. But at the end of the day, I don’t think it will be the end of the world. They’re adults!

Post # 32
Member
10452 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

Not a fan of the gap. I don’t want to go back to my hotel room or my home and sit around, dressed up waiting to go back out. It’s pretty rare in my circle though. It’s been awhile since I’ve been to a wedding with a gap, most of the weddings I attend aren’t Catholic Church weddings though so that’s probably why.

I’m not going to throw a fit over it or anything just be mildly annoyed and figure out something to do during that time but I certainly don’t view it as a perk for the guests.

Post # 33
Member
789 posts
Busy bee

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dianaj17 : Wow, what a huge chip you have on your shoulder if people can’t honestly express that they find gaps inconvenient &/ or tiring without you sneering that they must lead charmed lives with no actual problems. This is, after all, a wedding website where people discuss issues pertaining to weddings. lol I’m guessing you intend to have a gap at your wedding to take things so personally. 

Likely you never realized people care because, as at least a few of us pointed out, most of us would just suck it up without saying anything. There are times to speak up and times to be polite. I speak up over important issues but I’m not going to tell a bride or groom that their gap is inconvenient or that I didn’t care much for the main course they served for dinner or that their musical choices weren’t to my taste. But my being polite doesn’t change the fact that I found the gap inconvenient or long or tiring. 

 

 

Post # 34
Member
726 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2018

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bride2bee2020 :  

Yes, the church does dictate what times you can get married, depending on the parish. We had the option between a 1pm wedding or 2pm wedding on a Saturday and that was because our church has a 5pm mass… so the wedding needed to be done and cleaned up in enough time for mass. Your reception venue also has a role in the “gap”. I wouldn’t call it a specific Catholic gap though, as other PPs who have had Catholic weddings say they had shorter “gaps”.

OP, my wedding was literally the exact same as yours. 2pm wedding and 6pm cocktail hour. I think doors opened at 5:30 to the reception hall and dinner was served at 6:30pm.

I think the gap was mostly *caused* by the caterer at the venue. The caterer came with the venue (we could not contract outside caterers, nor did we want to) and they had a set serving time of either 6:30pm or 7:30pm and for obvious reasons due to the “gap” already, 7:30 was WAY to long to keep guests waiting when we had a 2pm ceremony.

The gap you described is pretty normal to me. It is common in my area and doesn’t bother me. I may roll my eyes when I attend a wedding and I’m like “what am I gonna do for 3 hours” especially if I’m not close to home, or in a super secluded area with no activities, but it isn’t the end of the world.. I know it isn’t always the couple’s fault there is such a gap.

Post # 35
Member
508 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2019

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citizenerased14 :  Exactly. We’re having a small gap, and people can deal with it – they’re adults. The times are noted on the invitations and if people don’t want to come to the ceremony, that doesn’t bother me. My family and close friends will be there. My family members and a good number of friends are all used to the gap. The friends who might not be used to the gap are the type who would love the opportunity to go to a great local microbrewery in-between. We’re also providing transportation from the hotels to the reception, and the gap between the end of the ceremony and getting on the shuttle bus is about 1 hour.

Post # 36
Member
1560 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: City, State

I find unhosted gaps of more than an hour rude.   

Idling for 3 hours all dressed up with nowhere to go isn’t convenient for guests who can’t make it back to a hotel or home in 10-15 mins and return refreshed.  Far from being refreshed, I’ve noticed the gaps make for guests who have been standing around for an extra 3 hours in heels and suits, wrinkled from sitting or sweating their makeup off, hungry because it doesn’t make sense to eat right before a wedding reception, etc.   

Keeping a small tab open at a local pub (or just a few plates of appetizers) for guests who don’t have anywhere else to be (especially the folks who haven’t been given a plus one) can be a nice gesture. 

 

Post # 37
Member
4958 posts
Honey bee

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dianaj17 :  Yes, I would gather that a website of people who talk about having purchased too many wedding rings or when to thank people for the large gifts of cash they received for the completely optional not at all required to be married parties they are throwing is in fact mostly people who live pretty charmed lives.  People with pretty charmed lives are pretty much the core audience for the wedding industry and weddingbee.

I’m not sure I would call people giving their opinions “rage” though.  That seems more like tone you’re giving it.  

Post # 38
Member
167 posts
Blushing bee

I love the mentality of “Well it’s MY WEDDING so my guests can DEAL WITH IT” looool.

So much for being a gracious host! 

Post # 39
Member
1827 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2019

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crustyoldbee :  Nope, no gap actually (beyond the drive back to the reception, which I’m sure could warrant it’s own etiquette debate), and it was by design because, as I stated, my preference is no gap. I guess I just find the “problem” of having to entertain myself for an extra hour 1-2 times a year (max) to be the epitome of a non-issue, in a world full of real problems. 

Post # 40
Member
1827 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2019

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annabananabee :  I was being tongue in cheek, because I think that it’s very common for people (I cop to being one of them) to lose sight of perspective when it comes to weddings, and any sort of hive mind cheers it on. Gaps aren’t ideal, but how many weddings with a gap does the average person go to in a lifetime, much less a year? Sure, grumble about it (I would), but it’s objectively just not a big deal and when it’s done for religious/cultural reasons, I think it’s silly to gripe about or deign rude. 

Post # 41
Member
508 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2019

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beeyouteefal :  I’m certainly gracious. “Deal with it” perhaps wasn’t the best choice of words, but what I meant is that guests shouldn’t really be upset about having some time to themselves for 1-1.5 hours. In the overall scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. I don’t ever remember being upset with any of the timing/gaps of weddings I’ve attended – I’ve always been excited to attend no matter the circumstances.

Post # 42
Member
1570 posts
Bumble bee

If you go to a Catholic ceremony, you accept the gap. 

If you care about the bride and groom you sure don’t cop an attitude that you need to go “take a break” or you’ll only attend one of the events you’ve been invited to attend.

Post # 43
Member
594 posts
Busy bee

i’ve never been bothered by the gap.  either i just go home and continue my day between the ceremony and reception (if it’s local), or just grab a drink or snack with friends in between.  i wouldn’t say its a preference but its certainly not a big deal.  

Post # 44
Member
1523 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Location

I’ve been to lots of catholic weddings and do find that 2-hour gap awkward.

Post # 45
Member
1192 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

Gaps suck. Last weekend I went to a Catholic wedding and the ceremony started at one and the reception didn’t start until 5. So for 3 hours my husband and I just had to kill time driving around and hanging out at a Culver’s. If it was close enough that I could go home that would be one thing but we couldn’t and it made for a very long day.

Did it ruin my life or make me mad at the couple? No, of course not. But it wasn’t fun either.

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