No Gifts For Convalidation Ceremony

My Husband and I got married 9 years ago. He was divorced at the time so we did a ultra small ceremony with a Justice of the Peace and our witnesses, then a dinner with friends, still very small (about 6 people). We chose Aruba as our “big” reception since I am from Venezuela and it was a very short trip for my family. Again, this was a small event with about 50 people, mostly my family and a few friends that made the trip form the US. Even then, my husband convinced me not to register, he thought it wasn’t right, considering it was his second marriage and most of the people coming were in another country. I agreed so, we got mostly cash from my family and just a few gift cards from the rest of the guests. Some single people and even a couple (very close to us at the time) didn’t give us a present. I think they thought that just being there was enough for us. The funny thing is, we knew they used his father’s miles to buy the tickets!

When my husband got his first marriage annulled a few months ago, our priest suggested we get our marriage convalidated in the church. I would like to have a post ceremony celebration (catered food, a cake, maybe some champagne, nice decor, music) closest friends (probably around 30 people), which most (only two couples would repeat) didn’t attend any or either of our first celebrations. This would be the party we never had, with our friends celebrating our union. We are not expecting any gifts but I don’t want to tell people “No gifts Please” either. Is there a polite, casual way to tell people that they are not obligated to give us anything and leave it up to them? Thanks A-

Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

Most people should know that a convalidation ceremony and party to follow isn’t a gift giving event. But the etiquette for letting your guests know about gifts, whether you want them or not, is the same for your event as it would be for a wedding – only by word of mouth or if asked directly.

Forget about gifts. Just relax and enjoy the service — and then celebrate!

Kay and Dennis Flowers

We agree. Since you’ve already been married nearly 10 years, you should wait a few more years for a landmark anniversary to have a huge reception where gifts are usually the norm. Most people expect to give a gift at a Silver Wedding anniversary celebration.

Congratulations on making the decision to have your wedding blessed by the Church. This should be cause enough to celebrate with your friends and family. God bless you.