Rowan Williams has spoken out against the trend of expensive “fantastical” weddings which he claims is threatening the future of marriages.
Speaking at a debate entitled “Marriage: Love or Law” in London, the former Archbishop of Canterbury said that the “marketisation of marriage” must be curtailed.
He labelled the idea of “the perfect relationship crystallised in the perfect wedding day” as a farce, suggesting that it was nothing more than the product of “immense economic advertising investment in this massively fantastical experience … after which, of course, nothing is ever quite so good again”.
“This is an aspect I think of the short-term, unimaginative, emotionally unintelligent climate that sometimes we seem forced to inhabit,” he said.
According to Lord Williams, who is now master of Magdalene College at the University of Cambridge, the way in which weddings have become hugely aspirational “experiences” as opposed to a simple public declaration of commitment is having a detrimental effect on the stability and longevity of marriages.
He suggested that it is symbolic of our fast-paced society that favours “rapid gratification” over long-term commitments, and seeks to emulate the excessive weddings of celebrities and the rich and famous, which, incidentally, rarely seem to stand the test of time.
Another issue highlighted by Lord Williams was a crisis of identity occurring among young men, which he referred to as “the real challenge posed in some sections of society”…
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