Group Presses Hallmark Channel Not to Skip 'I Dos' in Wedding Scenes

Arielle Kebbel as Jessie Patterson in Hallmark's 'A Bride for Christmas'
Arielle Kebbel as Jessie Patterson in Hallmark's 'A Bride for Christmas' (Image credit: Copyright 2012 Crown Media United States, LLC/Photographer: Ed Araquel)

American Marriage Ministries, a Seattle-based marriage equality and access group billing itself as supporting people of all races, genders and sexual orientations, is calling on Hallmark not to skip the vows in its holiday movies.

AMM is a nonprofit nondenominational church that provides online ordination--$95 for its Signature Wedding Officiant Package--claiming to have ordained over three-quarters of a million people.

Hallmark holiday movies are among the top-rated entertainment content on cable during the network's extended holiday season--from before Halloween until after Christmas.

Rather than cutting from the altar to the kiss, the group wants those shows to include "the minister’s blessing. The words of devotion. The awkward passing of the rings. The heartfelt written vows that make our adorable bride and bashful groom tear up, or those ‘for better, and for worse’ promises..."

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"There’s plenty to love about Hallmark holiday movies, and they generate hours of enjoyment for viewers. But with so many couples looking to pop culture for inspiration, this represents a massive missed opportunity for Hallmark to show how two people can use ceremony to create symbolic significance," the group said. ■ 

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.