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Wedding invitation

(50 Posts)
GLOBETROTTERHEAVEN Fri 05-Aug-16 21:42:04

DH and I have received a hand-written invitation to my aunt's wedding but it appears to be for the ceremony only. All the invite states is the details for the church venue, and nothing further to indicate there is a wedding breakfast/reception. It also states no kids and that 'presents are not required, but a monetary gift would be appreciated.'

I have never heard of sending ceremony-only invites (and we only got married a few months ago ourselves) and while I am not the type to get easily offended or hurt I find myself feeling like this. My aunt and her family are very sociable people who love a wine, dancing, parties etc so I find it impossible to believe that there is absolutely no celebration afterwards - not even an informal drink in the local pub. I have always got on very well with my aunt. Another two relatives have received the same invite, however they are barely on speaking terms with the aunt so I wouldn't have been surprised if they hadn't been invited at all.

As there is no one who could look after our DS I could only attend by myself and this would involve a 4-hour train journey each way. I am not bothered with the no kids request, but I find it rude to request a monetary gift when my presence is only required for the 20-30 minute ceremony, and after travelling for so long.

AIBU to politely decline the invite? I now know from a google search that ceremony-invites are the new thing but I find it rude, the request for money even ruder when our presence is only required for 20-30 mins, and then I/we should just leave after the ceremony and disappear. My aunt and her fiancee (who we had never met) came to the whole day and evening of our wedding (and received a thank you card). WWYD?

RNBrie Fri 05-Aug-16 21:44:10

I would not go and would decline with a made up excuse about a prior engagement. I would send a small cheque (£20 or £30) in a card for the day.

Missgraeme Fri 05-Aug-16 21:45:24

Personally would just send a nice card.

ALLthedinosaurs Fri 05-Aug-16 21:45:25

I wouldn't go. 4 hours by train, there and back, for a 20 minute ceremony and a demand for cash? Nope, no way.

Find a reason you can't attend... like a lovely day out with DH and DS. That's what I'd do!

gonegrey56 Fri 05-Aug-16 21:45:51

Just decline . You have a child and it is far too far away for a brief ceremony . And absolutely no "monetary gift" . How crass and ill mannered .

rollonthesummer Fri 05-Aug-16 21:47:35

Really-no reception/meal/shindig?!

I would ring her-presuming you're on good terms-to clarify.

M00nUnit Fri 05-Aug-16 21:48:02

Wow that's shockingly rude of your Aunt to only invite you to the ceremony and then ask you for money. I'd have to decline if I were you, especially as it we would be such a long and expensive journey there and back.

DragonsEggsAreAllMine Fri 05-Aug-16 21:48:28

I'd decline, either guests are good enough for the whole day or they are not.

Do you really want to go and pay an entry fee to see the marriage?

BackforGood Fri 05-Aug-16 21:48:41

First I'd check with someone (your Mum? another Aunt? a cousin?) if its just a clumsily worded invitation and the bride has assumed you will know about the reception or something, as that really is very odd, and rude to invite people to anything if you are not pjtting on some refreshment.

If it is actually correct, then I would decline, yes.

CodyKing Fri 05-Aug-16 21:51:11

Never heard of a ceremony only invite! Hoe odd! Strangers can turn up and sit in the church - but there must be something else surely?

bangingmyheadoffabrickwall Fri 05-Aug-16 21:51:34

I'm wondering if it has been a genuine error.

Is there anyone who you can trust to 'drop it into conversation' with the aunt?

If no mistake has been made, be honest and tell her that it is not feasible to travel 4 hours for a 20-30 minute ceremony and leave it at that. Why be embarrassed by the truth?

happypoobum Fri 05-Aug-16 21:56:48

Yeah I got invited to the ceremony only at an old friends wedding, along with a very expensive Harvey Nicks gift list. Only her newer, more "moneyed" friends were invited to the reception at a very posh hotel.

It was worth going though as the groom puked up at the altar. Best Wedding Ever

QuackDuckQuack Fri 05-Aug-16 21:57:29

Are you on the same 'tier' of relatives as the ones that aren't really in contact with your aunt? She may be attempting, albeit clumsily, to treat all relatives at the same level equally.

But I wouldn't go and wouldn't send a present.

bloodyteenagers Fri 05-Aug-16 21:57:32

Contact her and ask where the party is afterwards. Blaim it on ds, he opened the letter before you got to it and partially destroyed it. If he's too young it had a different accident.

TuppencePenny Fri 05-Aug-16 21:58:13

I've never heard of that either. Are you sure it's not just a weird invite and you are actually invited to a reception afterwards but she just hadn't put that bit on the invitation? I'd be calling to clarify "Thanks so much for the invitation I'm looking into childcare now and wanted to confirm times- is it just a ceremony or are you having a party afterwards? Trying to work out if I need a hotel."

Then if it's just ceremony say you can't get childcare and send a card. The line about money as a gift is pretty rank.

BackforGood Fri 05-Aug-16 22:01:23

I wouldn't make up stuff about not having childcare. I'd say that it wasn't practical to travel that distance for 30mins. Let her know.

NuttyMcAlletun Fri 05-Aug-16 22:07:27

It depends on the culture. In France, for example, it's normal to send a card announcing the wedding to everybody you know, the wording being that you invite them to the actual ceremony. If there is no mention about the party after, it really means you are not invited!
Of course, again in France, wedding ceremonies are open to anyone so you can't refuse for anyone to attend. In practice, you might have lovely neighbours (or nosey ones) coming to the town hall (and church if you want a religious wedding) and disappearing after.

Again, it's a cultural thing, so everybody knows where they stand. No one is expected to give a gift unless they are invited to the actual party.

Never heard of this in the UK, but maybe your aunt is trying to be continental? grin

Blondeshavemorefun Fri 05-Aug-16 22:07:54

maybe its the new way to make guests rsvp so they know where to go as in they have to contact bride and ask? grin

agree if only for ceremony then i wouldnt go and would send a card, 4hrs travel for 30mins is insane

cheminotte Fri 05-Aug-16 22:08:54

It sounds like a misunderstanding to me. She may be assuming everyone will travel together to the reception.

GrumpyOldBag Fri 05-Aug-16 22:09:23

Sounds like a mistake has been made. I would ask someone to clarify.

Invitation for reception only, not ceremony = normal

Invitation for ceremony only, not reception = not normal.

thenightsky Fri 05-Aug-16 22:10:14

What Tuppence said. I'd assume that the time the wedding starts means that is the time the day of celebration starts.

If it isn't, she is going to be very embarrassed with loads of relatives rocking up at a reception and nowhere to seat them.

PlotterOfPlots Fri 05-Aug-16 22:15:07

Could they be having the reception at a church hall on site? I think it's worth clarifying rather than just turning it down flat.

We "invited" some people to ceremony only but it was the church congregation and bellringers - people we knew in that context but weren't personally close to IYSWIM.

Ameliablue Fri 05-Aug-16 22:15:25

I wouldn't travel that far for ceremony only. I'd just send a nice card to say thanks but I can't make it, no explanation needed

HedgehogHedgehog Fri 05-Aug-16 22:15:26

Are you sure its not a mistake? Weve had wedding invites and there are two separate cards for the evening and the ceremony, it would be easy to forget to put one card in the envelope? Think you should check that hasnt happened first because i do think its very strange not to get invited to the evening do when youve been invited to the ceremony. Many people would turn up assuming they were invited to the whole thing.

Rubies12345 Fri 05-Aug-16 22:16:03

Is it possible this is more like a save-the-date? I.e they've booked the church but not the reception yet. Maybe a formal invitation will follow

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