The most dreaded question in church weddings and why it’s not the worst

AND so, there’s that moment at a wedding when the priest finally asks “Does anyone know any reason as to why these two should not be in holy matrimony, speak now or forever hold your peace.”

AND so, there’s that moment at a wedding when the priest finally asks “Does anyone know any reason as to why these two should not be in holy matrimony, speak now or forever hold your peace.”

This is a well known question that makes even the bravest of couples nervous and buckle a little. When the preacher is looking around for any answers, the couple can be seen sweating and if any scream was to be heard in the room at that moment, then one is bound to see how eyes will search the place for the culprit.

Well, last Saturday was my friend’s wedding and the same question was posed? Though no one spoke, it got me thinking. Would I have the courage to speak if I knew anything? Would that day ever come to pass when I would  not shut-up? What if I decided that our friendship can end but I can no longer keep quiet, would my argument be convincing?

My mind started racing, wondering had I been given a speech what  would I say. It’s a moment that’s dreaded but would have an awakening affect on brides dressed in snow-whites gowns and grooms in expensive tuxedos about the mighty weight of marriage. What I would say would probably provide them a chance to walk away right there than later. If the honesty card was played right, maybe many marriages wouldn’t end in divorce.

So, let’s say that I did make up a speech, would I say it at every blessed event? Would I say it to the same people using the same words? Let’s assume that I’ve decided to speak, would I begin attending weddings of people I don’t like? Anyway, would I say my speech and sit down or walk out? If I left after causing chaos, would I walk with a swagger like a man who’s just done the most upright thing or I would be ducking from shoes and stones thrown in my direction.

I know what you’re thinking. “Dude, why do you want to spoil people’s happiness?” If I can’t do my part why spend countless hours seated through rehearsed songs from hymn books? Why would I go to all those weddings that my fiancée drags me to? So, am going to do my part.

Scene 1

The preacher asks the question. I stand up. People gasp. My fiancée faints. The guy behind me drops his digital camera.

I start “Ahem…. Unless, this couple knows exactly what they are doing this wedding can’t go on. How can two people who never made plans past a fortnight, ever know if they are to last a lifetime?”

“Groom, are you ready to admit that for the rest of your life she will be the first person you see every morning and last person you see every night? Are you ready to defy temptation? Will you support her plans and dreams irrespective of yours? Will you always express your feelings to her; always care about her, even when she piles weight?”

“Bride, will you always be there for your husband, through good and bad times, through times when people let him down, distrust him and disappoint him? Will you always accept compromises with him? Will you always face your problems instead of running away from them?”

“The congregation, you are all smartly dressed but stop thinking about what kind of food will be served at the reception, and think about your duties. Are you willing to get down with this couple to their union, encouraged, and do whatever it takes to make sure it flourishes?”

Who can respond to these questions with absolute confidence? It’s hard or next to impossible. No person in this age and era is willing to bet on any marriage. Marriage has become more of a poker game, doing things on impulse and losing our all because no one thought about the implications first. The most important moment of this couple’s life and no one has any solid responses.

My married friend says “that’s the good part of the institution. The choice to marry has no rhyme or reason. The answer on whether the marriage will last can be found in the hearts of the couple. It’s the mind that decides and the heart that builds, if it was otherwise, no one would be getting married. Without a doubt, if it’s clear in your heart that you want to get married, then may God Bless you.

“I love weddings, they are so great?” my fiancée said, bringing me back from my slumber as the groom and bride kiss. “They look so beautiful.”

“Can’t agree more,” I said. “I wonder if they have enough frothy drinks at the reception, I’m thirsty.”


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