Trying to think about life and how God makes it full

UK Wedding Show at ExCeL

wdg1.JPGOn the 28th January, I’ll be one of the Diocese of Chelmsford’s representatives at the UK Wedding Show, being held at the ExCeL Exhibition Centre in the London Docklands area.

The Bishop asked me to be part of the team, and I was pleased to accept. I’ve never been to a wedding show before, so it will be an ‘interesting’ experience. Such a loaded word that, ‘interesting’, don’t you think? But I do like doing weddings, and apparently people really like what I do with their weddings, so I’m looking forward to being there.

One of the big things for me as someone responsible for marrying people is to ensure that we go through a fairly thorough period of marriage preparation. What that means in practice, is that I meet with every couple for about 3 x 1.5hrs sessions of discussion around a whole range of issues that will be encountered in their new life together. It usually raises some things that the couple either haven’t thought of, or simply haven’t confronted together. Mostly, that’s a positive experience for them, but occasionally it does bring up some fairly serious issues that are quite uncomfortable at the time. But better to recognise and confront them early (and with the help of a third party), rather than later. Most couples find the pre-marriage preparation really beneficial and actually enjoyable, even though most of them are quite nervous about it at the beginning. And it means that we get to know each other, so that we all feel a whole more comfortable with each other on the big day. It moves the whole thing beyond me merely providing a ‘service’, to something that has some meaningful relationship behind it.

My own marriage preparation lasted about 10 minutes I think, and I have virtually no memory of it. I certainly didn’t want to perpetuate that bad practice when I was in a position to do something about it.

My slot is in the afternoon of the 28th, and there will be 3 of us on the stand: 2 clergy (male and female) and a communications officer.

Let me know if you’re coming, and then come and say hello on the day.


January 22, 2007 Posted by | culture, ExCeL, god, mission, religion, weddings | Leave a comment