Speak now or forever hold your peace


I almost stood up and expressed my objections at a wedding before. I believe i may need to stand up now and voice my objections. I have concernces about the children involved. I have been trying to express my concerns in a polite and gentle manor. I have been trying not to interfere, everyone has free will, to choose their own mate. How far should I go in trying to ensure that the children will be well cared for, outside of praying of course. My knees have been planted so much my legs feel like roots. Have any of you ever been at a wedding where some one expressed there concerns? How did it go? Better to be vigilant than passive fool, right?


If I had some grave reason to believe two people for whom I have responsibility should not marry–and I mean grave reason–I certainly would not wait until the wedding to make those objections known. If I had reason to believe children were in danger I would report it to the appropriate authorities.


I have never been to a wedding where someone actually stood up and objected to the marriage, but I can imagine the pain, embarrassment and resentment that such a situation would cause.

Rather than creating a scene at the ceremony, and almost certainly losing whatever relationship you had with one or both parties involved, I would speak to him/her/them privately. If there is a real (not simply perceived) threat to the children, I would suggest that you speak with local law enforcement and/or child protective services. Just my :twocents:


sorry not that serious. I am just trying not to share too much information but i guess i need to.

I grew up with the children’s father who was in a tragic accident which took his life a year ago. He left a daughter and a then unborn child. Our family and community care a great deal for the children. Since i was so close to he and his family, everyone comes to me with their concerns about his wife and children. I have no contol over his wife, she has her free will. I was briefly related to her husband to be, through marriage and know more than i want to know about him. It is enough to concern me about the children’s future. I can’t share specifics here, insight is what i want not advice, the moral perspective in trying to prevent a marriage. I don’t want to lose sleep thinking i could have done something to help. If i need help on specifics i’ll talk to a priest.


Keep in mind that at a Catholic wedding ceremony, the phrase “speak now or forever hold your peace” will NOT be used. Because of the Pre-Cana preparation involved in a Catholic wedding, and ample opportunity for others to express their concerns, any objections to the wedding should have been voiced WELL before the ceremony.


they are not Catholic. If they were we would not likely be having these concerns. They would have already gone through all the preparation of marriage. Here they have not.


This marriage has not yet been made officially public, and it has shocked everybody and left them stunned. The marriage is soon. They will also be leaving the country soon. The marriage seems on a whim, it has everyone worried.


If you can’t bring yourself to talk to the couple or woman one-on-one, why do you think you should stand up and say things in church?


Are you getting this information second hand or have you witnessed anything yourself? That makes a difference. Also if there is child abuse you need to report it to the authorities.

If you haven’t witnessed child abuse yourself but others are implying that there is some, you need to really pressure the people who have witnessed the abuse to call the authorities.

Beyond doing the above, all you can do is pray.


I would only add that if truly have something that would involve the groom or the bride, you can always go to the officiating clergyperson privately, if you think it is that bad a situation. Know that if you do, you may not like the answer.

I will repeat- If there is ANY child abuse involved, you should report it at once to your child abuse hotline. If there is second-hand information of abuse, those who are coming to you need to report it.


The situation has been addressed. No further responses needed. Thank you.


I’m glad the situation has been resolved.

As a further nerdy academic note, the “speak now” stuff goes back to the days when records were spotty and everyone relied on personal testimony to establish whether there was an impediment to the marriage. This is also why parishes still have marriage banns or announcements well in advance of the marriage. The words at the ceremony were the last chance to present evidence in a matter of speaking. Since everyone tends to be well-documented these days, it’s a mere formality.

In other words, the only reason anyone should stand up at the speak now part is if there was some reason the could not contract a marriage. “He’s already married to…” Or “She’s his first cousin” would be examples. “He’s a drinking louse who would be a terrible father.” would not be a reason to interrupt and is governed by the Butt-out rule.


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