Calling Off The Wedding

You have heard it said on more than one occasion, “better a broken engagement today, than a broken home tomorrow.”  At some point during wedding planning, many couples have normal doubts and last minute jitters.  After all, it is only natural.  The importance of choosing a mate cannot be over emphasized.  There are few decisions in life so important and of such lasting consequence.

A broken engagement is painful for everyone involved.  If the engagement has not been formally announced, the word can be simply passed to a few friends who will tell other people.  When passing along such sensitive information, it is important to maintain the privacy of those involved. 

If the engagement has been announced in the papers, a brief announcement to the effect that it is now broken is in order.  The announcement should read something to the effect:

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald  C. Phillips announce that
the engagement of their daughter
Kristine Marie and Mr. Kevin Allen Whitmire
has been ended by mutual consent.

If the wedding invitations have been sent, a printed announcement is the proper way to make the broken engagement known.  However, if the engagement is broken only a few days prior to the wedding, the news must be passed around as quickly as possible.  To do this, the family may have to resort to the telephone, as well as printed announcements. Suggested wording for the announcement:

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald  C. Philips
announce that the marriage of their daughter
Kristine Marie to
Mr. Kevin Allen Whitmire
will not take place.

Occasionally, there may be reason to postpone a wedding due to a death in the family or serious illness. In the case of a postponement, it is important all guests be notified as soon as possible. Remember, some guests may have plane reservations to cancel and reschedule.  In the event of a postponement, an explanation is proper, whereas in the case of an outright cancellation, no explanation is given. If time permits, formal announcements may be printed, however, handwritten notes are also appropriate.  Suggested wording  for a notice of postponement may read as follows:

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald C. Phillips
regret that they are obliged to recall
the invitations to the marriage of their daughter
Kristine Marie to Mr. Kevin Allen Whitmire|
due to the death of Mr. Whitmire’s father
James Edward Whitmire

If the wedding is still to take place, the following can also be added to the above announcement:

The ceremony will be held privately
In the presence of the immediate family

The occasion may also arise when the invitations to a reception must be recalled.  The following wording is appropriate in the instance where the ceremony will take place, but not the reception.

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald C. Phillips
Regret that owing to a death in the family
They are obligated to recall the invitations
To the marriage reception of their daughter
On Saturday, the first day of October
Nineteen hundred and Ninety eight
The marriage ceremony will take place
As originally planned