Pastor Refuses to Marry Couple an Hour Before Ceremony Because Bride’s Dress is Too Sexy

Apostle Michael Canty of the Truth Ministries Holiness Church recently refused to marry a couple mere hours before the ceremony was to be performed. His reasoning? The bride’s dress was too sexy:

Image of the bride’s dress from the manufacturer

The wedding scheduled Saturday, August 10th, was scheduled for 3pm. At 2pm, the pastor greeted the bride and groom when he noticed the bride’s dress. According to the bride’s mother, the pastor jokingly asked ‘where is the other half of the dress?’ Not thinking anything of it, the family laughed it off and continued applying make-up on the bride. Around 2:30pm the pastor asked a leader of the church to ask the bride and the family about the other part of her dress. The bride informed the leader ‘this is it’. The leader reported the news to the pastor and then the pastor informed personally the bride and groom at separate times he could not perform the wedding with the bride in her selected dress. The pastor told the bride she would have to cover up her breast area and find a way to add length to the dress. The bride informed the pastor there is no way to accomplish this with so short of a notice and she has to wear her dress. Then the pastor informed her he would not be able to perform the ceremony then walked back to his office.

It is no secret that religions tend to preach “modesty” to women, but this is downright ridiculous. Wedding days are supposed to be a celebration of a couple, not an opportunity to be slut-shamed by a pastor.

Surely the irony of telling someone they look too sexy hours before a ceremony about monogamy is lost on this man.

By refusing to marry this couple, this pastor’s message is loud and clear: Do not judge… lest I find your wedding dress to be too sexy.

About Lauren Lane

Lauren Lane is the co-founder of Skepticon, the Midwest's largest skeptic student-run conference and remains a lead organizer today. She has not one, but TWO fancy art degrees and is not afraid to use them.

  • new_atheist

    Not surprisingly, I find nothing wrong with this dress.

  • Bête Politique

    He knew he would get a hardon that’s why.

    • Keith

      And we all know how men simply have no control over themselves when women dare to show some skin!

    • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

      Well the last wedding that minister perform was an embarrassment. The dress wasn’t nearly as revealing, and he still flubbed the vows.

      “Do you take these breasts, uh… I mean this woman, to be your lawfully wedded breasts, if so, say I boob.”

    • Sandra Stott

      that’s probably why he went into his office after telling them. He had to…take care of it.

      • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

        “I’ll be in my rectory.” said the reverend Jayne Cobb.

        • Tainda

          That sounds dirty in so many ways! I LIKE it! And any dirty relating to Jayne I am ALL aboard!

      • Kate

        That was my very first thought.

  • Stev84

    >”The Truth Ministries Holiness Church was established 14 months ago and
    currently rent a converted shoe store for worship services”

    Maybe next time find a church that appears more serious and credible

    • Black Lotus

      “Church” and “credible”… two words that do NOT go together.

      • Stev84

        I meant that more in a business sense, which is after all what all churches really are. If I were a believer, a church with a real property that actually looks like a church would be more trustworthy than some newcomers in a shoe store or shopping mall.

        Not that that would necessarily result in a different outcome in this situation.

        • Black Lotus

          I know. I was just having fun with the wordplay. :) I totally agree with what you.

      • Carla

        “two words that do NOT god together.”

        Best typo ever….

  • Dorothy

    i wouldn’t expect to wear a dress like that in a church called Truth Holiness ministries. It’s incongruous. If she expected to get married in that church, she should have known what the milieu and expectations were.

    Not saying the church is correct in their attitude toward women, just saying that it was HER choice to go there, and she could have found a someplace that better fit her own beliefs.

    • Stev84

      They don’t have a church. They have a remodeled shoe store. It doesn’t say so in the article, but I’d say it was a location wedding and the couple only rented the pastor.

    • Nilanka15

      Agree with the gist of this comment. Although any “rules” enforced by an old man in a robe are beyond ridiculous, the bride should’ve had the sense to know her dress might be an issue considering the setting.

  • LesterBallard

    Why have a “church” wedding with a “pastor” anyway?

    • baal

      My favorite two weddings were held in the out doors and officiated by atheists. One was in a national park and the other was on the beach in California next to the ocean (we were all barefoot for it). In both cases the celebrants designed their own ceremonies. My wedding was barely tolerable due to the heat and boring of it and when it was done, the only question anyone had or comment they made was “why is the pastor wearing loafers?”.

      • FlightedChemist

        Best wedding I’ve been to was in the backyard of the maid-of-honor. The officiant had gotten himself ordained online especially for the occasion and happened to be the maid-of-honor’s brother. He was wearing a pink hawaiian shirt, no shoes, and hadn’t bothered to shave. The ceremony lasted all of 10 minutes, and it was one of the simplest, most meaningful exchanges of vows I’ve ever witnessed, followed by the best party I’ve ever attended.

        • allein

          Sounds a bit like my friend’s wedding. It was in a gazebo near the water (a bay in NJ) on a gorgeous day in May; there were a few benches but mostly everyone was just standing around. The bride, 6 months pregnant (they were engaged for a year by then, though), wore a white cotton dress and the groom wore khakis and a short sleeved button-down shirt. The “bridal party” consisted of his 3 neices, her neice, and her stepsister’s daughter, all ranging in age from 8 to 17. And they each wore whatever dress they wanted…the youngest looked like she could be a standard flower girl, the older ones looked more like they were going to a school dance. The bride and groom walked down the “aisle” (the sidewalk from the parking lot) together. There was a minister, so there was some goddiness in the ceremony but it was pretty standard stuff and the ceremony itself lasted maybe 10 minutes. Then we had a reception at the firehouse a few blocks from their house.

          Personally, if I ever get married, I would totally elope except my mother would probably cry if I didn’t have some kind of ceremony. In that case, I want the short, short version from Spaceballs.

    • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

      Sometimes to prevent civil war within the family….

      • LesterBallard

        Delaying is probably more accurate.

      • busterggi

        Yeah, I did that. Its a temporary solution at best.

    • WallofSleep

      Heh. Today they’re crying persecution over the gov’t maybe, possibly, forcing them to marry gays if same sex marriage is one day legalized.

      I’ll bet ten years from now they’ll be crying persecution because nearly no one will be coming to their damned temples and paying their bigoted god-men to perform any kind of marriages.

      • Dress2Emperess

        We can dream, Wall. We can dream!

  • Mandy

    I usually like the posts on this site, but this one is rather ridiculous. Anyone with any type of experience in any type of church would know that this dress is completely inappropriate in that setting, and I would entirely expect any member of the clergy to have the same reaction that this pastor had. The bride should have known better. It’s not about slut shaming. It’s about common sense.

    • Pofarmer

      Apparently some folks somewhere are getting married in it if it’s for sale. Honestly, from my experience, someone getting married in a brand new church in a former shoe store has the tendency to be a little, well, uhm, out there sometimes.

      • Mandy

        This dress would be appropriate for a secular wedding, but in a church, really? What would you expect? I can’t believe anyone would be so obtuse or even shocked at such a refusal.

        • Makoto

          Why not in a church? I’ve been to Star Wars themed weddings in a church. I’ve seen brides (and bridesmaids) in fairly sheer and skimpy outfits at a church. I’ve seen fursuit weddings in a church and casual clothes weddings at a church.

        • Benjamin

          Mandy, Are you aware that just saying “Really?” indignantly is not actually making a point? That’s not a coherent argument for anything. Your idea of what is and is not appropriate seems to be in your mind self evident. If it’s not about slut shaming, why not tell us all what is actually wrong with this dress? It’s easy to call us obtuse, but can you actually justify this pastors refusal? Without just telling us what’s appropriate, but rather why it’s appropriate or not? For the record, it is slut shaming, and I don’t think anyone here is shocked that the pastor of a church in a shoe store is slut shaming. We’re still pointing out that it’s wrong.

          • Mandy

            I’m not justifying the pastor’s refusal. I’m simply not surprised by it. This woman picked this church to get married in. Is she completely unfamiliar with the denomination’s culture, vis-a-vi what is and is not deemed appropriate church attire? The terms “church” and “sexy” are typically at odds with each other. Perhaps she should have used a bit more forethought when choosing either the church or the dress.

            • Benjamin

              And as I said, no one is “surprised” by it. It’s still wrong. I think the “you should have known better” thing we throw at victims needs to stop. If you’re not using it to justify what the pastor did, then why use it at all? If what he did was wrong, then lets just say it was wrong and stop there. What exactly is the point of saying to the bride “you should have known you’d be wronged” ?

    • Ewan

      Er, no. While one might be able to predict a pastor being a sexist, shaming arsehole, that doesn’t mean it’s OK for him to go right ahead and be one anyway.

    • # zbowman

      Right. I mean, how could she possibly expect to be treated any other way? Look at what she was wearing, she was asking for this.

    • http://www.secularview.com/ Dirty_Nerdy

      “It’s not about slut shaming. It’s about common sense.”

      So, because churches slut-shame all the time, we should excuse it this time and not be upset?

      The fact that it is to be expected should make you even more angry about it. Fuck slut-shaming, adn fuck those who do it so often (read: churches) that we’re no longer surprised by it.

      • GCT

        Wishing I could upvote this more.

      • guest

        The bride chose the church and minister, not the other way around. She should have known or found out ahead of time that her dress was unacceptable and either modified/changed it or picked a different setting and moderator. Get over yourselves. I think you just like to use the phrase “slut shaming” because your reasoning is flawed. She’s obviously a slut anyways if she chose that dress. Brazen hussy deserved what she got.

        • badgerchild

          “Brazen hussy” = someone sexier than you. “Slut” = someone having more sexy fun than you. “Unacceptable” = someone who has an advantage over you (how unfair is that?).

        • GCT

          So, he gets to be the arbiter of her sexuality?

          Get over yourselves. I think you just like to use the phrase “slut shaming” because your reasoning is flawed. She’s obviously a slut anyways if she chose that dress. Brazen hussy deserved what she got.

          Wow. Simply wow.

        • Oranje

          Do people still say hussy?

  • 7Footpiper

    From the linked article:

    “After hearing how the bride was crying her eyes out in the back, a minister who was a guest at the wedding offered to perform the ceremony. When the minister asked the pastor for permission to perform the ceremony, the pastor told him ‘no’ and expressed to him how his request was disrespectful.”

    Honestly, if I was the Minister I would happily violate the sanctity of the holy Payless Shoes and the end of summer BOGO special to Marry the couple. If it really came down to it I’d even marry them in the front parking lot.

    • KrisDStar

      Agreed. Or moved to a near by public park and married them under the trees.

  • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

    That’s a beautiful dress to wear if you’re going clubbing on a Friday night. Wearing that to a church? I have to question the bride’s judgement. FWIW, neither the bride nor the groom were members of the church.

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with her getting married in that dress. But expecting a pastor to be ok with it shows a clear lack of common sense.

    • http://billybobsbibleblog.blogspot.com/ billybobbibb

      I agree. How would you feel if some twit wanted to open the local atheist meeting with a prayer to Jesus. Hello? It’s the pastor’s church, and if he finds the dress distasteful, he has every right to refuse to marry the couple. Like most of you, I’m totally OK with the revealing wedding dress, but the bride should have thought twice before wearing it to a Christian church wedding, really.

      • TnkAgn

        I do not see this as an apt comparison. Plus (and I am extrapolating here), we should take care not to conflate atheism with licentiousness, which the religious right already does.

        • badgerchild

          Licentiousness is a sexual behavior. Wearing a dress is a clothing choice. Licentiousness does not enter into the question unless the preacher saw the bride fucking the best man in the narthex.

          Besides, nobody is conflating anything with atheism, and what difference does it make anyway how atheists choose to conduct their individual sex lives? Are you doing a demographic poll, or are you the marketing executive in charge of the atheist movement’s reputation? (Because if you are, you have a cleanup on aisle Dawkins.)

          • TnkAgn

            Okay…then we’re not arguing.

            And what’s a “narthex?”

            • badgerchild

              It’s the lobby in front of the actual sanctuary area, where everyone gathers before they enter the church proper. I suppose in this case the narthex would be just outside the plate glass windows. :D

          • Dress2Emperess

            Such an acerbic tongue, badgerchild. It’s sad, really. It reminds me of a child bashing repeatedly into a wall to destroy his shadow. It’s not really a threat, but for some reason, the child perceives it as such. Anyone who tries to present an analogy to illustrate their own opinion is immediately insulted and demeaned by you. For someone purporting to be against abuse of others, you seem very liberal in dishing it out. Looks like the Christians aren’t the only hypocrites on this blog.

            • badgerchild

              You’re not harmed, you’re just a tiresome blamer who is angry and posturing because your arguments don’t hold water and you don’t have the ability to make them stick. If that’s being abused, it’s self-inflicted. Hope the rest of your day goes better.

      • qp3

        Hmm.. I always thought the church was God’s house… but now it’s the priests house? And isn’t the priest supposed to be some kind of medium in a wedding cermony and it’s actually God who weds the bride and groom?

        I’d say, if God has a problem with women wearing that dress getting married in his house, he should be the one to speak up.

      • smrnda

        The problem is that this is *her wedding* – a prayer to Jesus is hijacking an atheist meeting with a competing agenda.

    • GCT

      So, it’s her fault that the pastor is a slut-shaming asshole?

      • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

        It’s an issue of social context. The dress is fine, but the church is the wrong context for it.

        We all agree that the church is too prudish. So why is there surprise that the prudish church acts prudishly?

        • http://www.secularview.com/ Dirty_Nerdy

          No, it’s not an issue of social context. It’s an issue of that pastor being a sexist, slut-shaming asshole. Why are people arguing to excuse this guy’s sexism just because it’s normal to encounter this type in church? The fact that it’s “normal” should make you angrier about it!

          • Quintin van Zuijlen

            Actually the specific issue is that there was an agreement and the pastor didn’t oblige by it. The fact that he’s a slut shaming sexist is an issue too, but he has a right to that.

            • badgerchild

              He has a right to it so far as it does not include defrauding others, even in the sharply limited libertarian understanding.

            • GCT

              And, we have the right to call him out on it and not excuse it.

          • Henry Young

            What sexism? I’m sure if the man had turned up half naked he would have got turned down too.

            • GCT

              Because he’s too sexy?

        • GCT

          Why should we be surprised when Muslim men force women to wear burkas? Should we shrug our shoulders at that as well?

          • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

            The problem with Muslim dress codes is when you have a theocracy, and such religious observances become the law of the land. That’s not comparable to the situation here.

            How Muslims conduct themselves within their own mosques is their own business (in the US, anyway); those are private entities that people self-select to be a part of.

            This couple selected this pastor and this church; they probably should have communicated with him more to find out how compatible their beliefs were.

            • GCT

              The problem with Muslim dress codes is when you have a theocracy, and such religious observances become the law of the land. That’s not comparable to the situation here.

              So, it’s only a problem once it gets enshrined into law?

              How Muslims conduct themselves within their own mosques is their own business; those are private entities that people self-select to be a part of.

              Bullshit. I reserve the right to call them out for being sexist and misogynistic.

              This couple selected this pastor and this church; they probably should have communicated with him more to find out how compatible their beliefs were.

              Whether they did this or not, it’s still unacceptable on the part of the pastor to slut-shame.

              • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

                Don’t put words in my mouth. I didn’t say making it a law was the only problem with Muslim dress codes. But if private organizations where people self-select for membership want to require conservative dress codes, that’s their business.

                I’m not sure I would label this story as “mysogynistic”. Where would you, personally, draw the line for what an acceptable wedding dress is? I see a lot of atheists here commenting that the dress is too racy for church.

                Regardless, it looks to me as though this story is bullshit; a fake story published by a disreputable website in order to get traffic. I find no evidence that the pastor is real, the church is real, or that the bridge and groom are real. I can’t even figure out what city and state this is supposed to have taken place in. I have not found another source for this story that does not reference AmericaPreachers.com

                • GCT

                  I didn’t say making it a law was the only problem with Muslim dress codes. But if private organizations where people self-select for membership want to require conservative dress codes, that’s their business.

                  You’re contradicting yourself. If the law is not the only problem, then it’s not solely “their business” what they choose to do when it comes to dress codes.

                  I’m not sure I would label this story as “mysogynistic”.

                  I do, because the pastor engaged in slut shaming. Again, I reserve the right to call them out. They may have the right to act like assholes, but they don’t have the right to do so without being criticized for it.

                  Regardless, it looks to me as though this story is bullshit; a fake story published by a disreputable website in order to get traffic.

                  That may be the case, but whether it is or not, our reactions are certainly real, and I see a lot of atheists defending misogyny (but, what else is new?) We should not be sitting by and defending or apologizing for this type of behavior, even if it is fictional.

                  As for what dress is acceptable, that’s up to the bride and groom.

            • Dress2Emperess

              Thank you, Heisenberg. I’ve been trying to point that out, but so many on here are so closed-minded by their foaming-at-the-mouth hatred of churches to see that the context is what matters. Growing up, my mother told me a story about a man who found a pretty poisonous snake. He became obsessed with loving this snake, remarking on its beauty, and telling the snake how beautiful it was. Finally, he just had to pick this snake up and stroke it. The snake bit him, causing him to become seriously ill. “How could you do this to me, after I loved you and told you how beautiful you are?”, the man asked.

              “You knew I was a snake when you picked me up,” the snake replied.

              If you know you are entering a church, be prepared to be insulted and assaulted. But don’t blame the church for your ignorance. You knew you were entering a church when you came through the door.

              • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                Yeah, don’t blame the abuser for abusing, blame the victim because she knew what he was like.

                • badgerchild

                  Well said. I’ve seen other people who escaped abuse attempt to shame others who are currently being abused, by saying, “Well, I got out, why don’t you”. I haven’t often seen people saying, “I got out, but as long as you’re in, you have to put up with the abuse just because you’re in the abuser’s home. After all, context.”

                • Dress2Emperess

                  badgerchild, nothing I have stated in anyway supports the right of abuse, or holds a victim responsible for their abuse. However, if I continue to return to my abuser after I have obtained my freedom (and as an adult, children obviously have no choice), I don’t have the right to complain that I’m being abused. I cannot change the behavior of my abuser, that is within their hands, however, I can stop subjecting myself to them by being available. I continue to strongly suggest you get some counseling. You are just full of poisonous rage.

                • badgerchild

                  I think your posts speak for themselves. You’re just saying, “I got out, and to hell with others victimized by my victimizer, they got what they deserved.” Perhaps you feel you also deserved the treatment you got while you were in. I suppose it’s going to take you some time to understand that what happened to you wasn’t your fault, and what happened to other victims aren’t their fault. Please consider this.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Shorter D2E — “You knew he was abusive, you deserve to be beaten.”

    • mikespeir

      I agree. But you’d think this kind of thing might have been checked out way in advance. If the pastor was caught flatfooted on wedding day, maybe that was his fault.

  • grindstone

    First reaction: jeezus, what was she thinking wearing that club dress into a church to begin with. Second: wait, why do we insist on dressing brides up as virginal dolls anyway. Third: wear what you want, sister, hope your marriage is long and happy.

    • Ewan

      It’s all very well for us in the secular world to mock, but women in the christian world are told that sex is something they should reserve for their husbands, and that a wife’s primary responsibility is to please her husband, and that the purpose of marriage is to procreate children, AKA, have sex.

      After a lifetime of that, you can hardly blame someone for following through on it.

      • grindstone

        I’m honestly confused how your comment relates to mine. Believe me, I have a lifetime of Christianity and religious training that I’m unlearning. That’s why my first reaction was: yikes, bad dress. Then I pondered on what I considered to be a “correct dress” and realized that I have a mindset regarding weddings and church weddings, etc., from which I need to look outside. Hence: well wishes to the bride and wear what you want, peace, out.

        Better?

      • Alison

        Hmmmm I’m a PROUD Christian and I have never been told, not ONCE, that my sole responsibility was to be a sexual slave to my husband and procreate. Why do you come on here to debate a topic you obviously know nothing about? No matter what type of religious building regardless of sect you are attempting to enter you would never get in, in that dress and any bride with some common sense should have known that!! It’s called respect which few people on here have much of… You are all so worried about your rights that you are overbearingly marching over the rest of the worlds’…. I find it increasingly common that those who are SCREAMING the loudest for tolerance are in fact the MOST intolerant of anyone’s beliefs aside from their own!!

        • katiehippie

          If I CAPITALIZE certain words that means that I’m RIGHT!!

          • TnkAgn

            Double exclamation points makes them even more right!!

          • Kevin_Of_Bangor

            That is taught in Christian Logic 101.

        • http://www.secularview.com/ Dirty_Nerdy

          I was told that multiple times growing up as Christian. Why, it’s almost as if there are different Christian denominations filled with people who are sexist to varying degrees and you just happened to have a different experience.

          • Alison

            Well then I might suggest you weren’t raised in a Christian church. Just because somebody calls themselves a Christian doesn’t make it so unfortunately. Kind of like painting everyone with the same brush…

            • badgerchild

              Well, I was raised in a Christian church, and we were taught to love and accept one another as brothers (and sisters) in Christ. My Sunday school teacher taught us that if we showed up in jeans and a T-shirt to worship the Lord, we were still acceptable in God’s sight. I guess your God’s other name is Queen Victoria, my dear.

            • Helanna

              As nice as it is to just pretend that anybody who doesn’t agree with you isn’t actually a Christian, you don’t actually get to make that call. There’s just as many people who would say YOU aren’t a real Christian because you *don’t* believe women should be submissive to men.

              Just suck it up and admit that some Christians are complete assholes. Just like some atheists are, and just like some Jews are, and just like some Muslims are . . .

            • TheG

              So… just because you claim to be a Christian, we shouldn’t believe you?

            • Bitter Lizard

              When is it going to be my turn to define who a true Christian is? All of you guys get a turn. It’s not fair.

              • ShoeUnited

                No true Scotsman would commit a fallacy.

            • NickDB

              Aah, the not a true Christian excuse.

              I miss the days when us Catholics, the one true christian church – started by Jesus and St Peter (Or was it Paul, could never remember) themselves, could burn you heretics at the stake.

            • Kate

              Allow me to interrupt this thread momentarily to inform you that you sound like an insufferable snob. Your head is so far up your ass and you don’t even realize it. Of course *your* experience of life and the world is the only proper one. Of course *you* are a real Christian, and as a real Christian you have the weighty responsibility of saving us poor doomed sluts from our sartorial sins. Please, JUDGE ME.

              “Well then I might suggest you weren’t raised in a Christian church. Just
              because somebody calls themselves a Christian doesn’t make it so
              unfortunately. Kind of like painting everyone with the same brush…”

              GOOD CHRIST. You are one smug lady.

            • RobMcCune

              Well I might suggest that:

              1. They believed Jesus was their personal lord and savior.

              2. The bible is the revealed word of god

              3. Those are pretty big indicators that someone is a christian

              4. If you’re going to start with that “christianity is a magic voice in your head that means you never ever do anything wrong” then STFU.

              • Dress2Emperess

                I would like to see evidence of your second suggestion.

            • Timothy R Alexander

              Might I suggest your not going to win this argument so you might want to stop while your behind.

            • busterggi

              There are approximately 1.5 billion people in the world today who call themselves Christians. Please list those who truly qualify so we can know which are or aren’t.

            • JohnnieCanuck

              So what you’re saying is that yours is the only True Christian Church. All those people in thousands of other Christian Churches that disagree with yours are No True Christians™. Not that they would ever say the same thing about you.

            • Tainda

              Look at that Dirty_Nerdy, you weren’t a TRUE christian

            • Kevin_Of_Bangor

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              Actually, if someone thinks Jesus was son of God who died for their sins and calls themselves a Christian, I’m going to believe them.

              The rest is commentary.

            • phantomreader42

              Alison, would you be so kind as to post a picture of your certificate, signed personally by almighty god in eternally burning letters, that appoints you and you alone as the sole arbiter of what constitutes a True Christian™? Until you do, shut the fuck up with the No True Scotsman bullshit.

            • Oranje

              Oww! I just got hit by a falling Scotsman!

            • Hat Stealer

              Wow, just cycling through the clichés tonight, aren’t we? Care to tell us how we’re not actually atheists, and that we’re just angry at God? Or that the Old Testament doesn’t count because it’s “cultural?”

              Snerk.

            • Guest

              No true Scotsman logical fallacy.

            • Fred

              You’ll need to give us your email address, that way you can let us know if someone is a real christian or not. Unless, let me guess, all the real christians only belong to your church.

        • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

          Respect? Let’s talk a little about respect.

          Respect is letting a woman, on her wedding day (or really any day), wear whatever she damn well pleases to make herself feel beautiful and, yes, sexy if she wants to. Respect is saying it’s her day, and she’s contracted me to perform a service, so I should. Respect is not breaking a contract one hour before the service rendered and doing your very best to ruin what is many women’s “dream day”. Respect is not making impossible demands for dress alteration. The bride liked the dress- you can think it’s tacky, and that’s fine, but respect her choice on her own freaking wedding day!

          Is it the package or the inside that matters most? You say you’re Christian- what happened to that judge not lest ye be judged thing?

          • Alison

            I’m not judging her choice of attire…I’m suggesting that she made an unfortunate choice of venue if she that was the type of thing she wanted to wear. As Christians we are not held to the standards of society. If in my daily practice in my chosen profession you asked me to do something that was unscrupulous I too would refuse to provide you my services. The bible passage you quote talks about holding people accountable to one standard and living your own life by a different set of standards in fact the next verse which few people ever quote is..For in the way you judge, you will be judged and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. So in other words, if I chose to dress in a provocative manner I can’t call other people out on being dressed inappropriately.

            • badgerchild

              What about that dress was “unscrupulous”? Would it have been less provoking if the bride had worn a Renaissance outfit, a Harry Potter witch costume, or a hippie beaded halter and bell bottoms? I have friends who have got married in each of those in a church, presided over by a pastor. But I can’t see how any of those are “unscrupulous”, and nobody except a few old biddies in the pews thought it was “inappropriate”. Each was totally appropriate to the couple, which was what everyone else though counted the most.

              • busterggi

                I found her dress scrumpulous myself.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Hey, me too, busterggi, and she can show all the breasts she wants in my house! The point here was, its not my house. I just don’t understand why people can’t get that through their heads. I guess I’m a bit surprised that on this site called “Friendly Atheist” so many are defending weddings, and that because it is ‘her’ wedding, a bride is entitled to do pretty much anything she wishes, regardless of whose boundaries it crosses. I find religion despicable, but if and when I visit a church or church-related event (and I have attended my friends services, weddings, funerals, etc.), I take the time to know what is appropriate for that church. Since so many seem concerned about the monetary loss this couple experienced, one might think that such an outlaying of cash would prompt them to investigate what would be expected of them from their chosen venue, regardless of whether they themselves or their parents, grandparents, or other relatives made the arrangements.

                • badgerchild

                  People are not entitled to do anything they want just because it’s “their house”. I suggest you take that attitude to a domestic violence shelter and see how far you get with it.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  You belittle domestic violence when you place it in the same category as wearing a certain garment in a certain arena. You sound extremely emotionally stagnated.

                • badgerchild

                  You belittle the mentally ill when you use their struggle as an insult. See, I can do it too! Oh, and I actually was a victim of domestic violence. Perhaps you are struggling with a mental illness.

                  In any case, you haven’t addressed whether it is OK for people to do any damn thing they please just because it’s “their house, their rules”, even if their actions are harmful. Suppose you stick to that and not to ineffectual meowing and clawing.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Hi, I’m a DV survivor, and your attitude? Your attitude is victim blaming.

            • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

              Preforming a wedding is unscrupulous? If the minister knew that the dress code could be and issue, then he had the responsibility to tell the couple. It is not the responsibility of the couple to guess what the minister finds acceptable or not. The minister should have address the issue well before the wedding day. It’s call respect for the couple.

            • TheG

              You keep mentioning your experiences as a “Christian”, as if they are monolithic and all the same.
              Just because your experience with your particular sect acts one way and teaches one thing doesn’t mean that all self-proclaimed Christians have the same experience.
              There are plenty of slut-shaming misogynists out there teaching their anti-women screeds, but your sect appears to be one of the very few who don’t see it that way (or, more likely, you just haven’t been shown it).
              Please, don’t lump all Christians in one basket or give all Christians the benefit of the doubt. Unless your level of shallowness won’t be materially effected when I mistake you for a member of Westboro Baptists…

            • allein

              How is it unscrupulous for the pastor to perform the ceremony just because he personally disapproves of her dress? I’d say it’s unscrupulous for him to back out at the last minute for such a superficial reason.

            • Bobbie McMillan

              You like bible passages? Here is one for you. Judge not, lest ye be judged. Here is another one. And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
              And your reference to the next verse? I wonder how your god will judge you when he finds out this preacher turned away a woman and man who were trying to; What God hath joined together let no man put asunder. ? For the simple reason this fat old white guy didn’t like her dress.

            • sara

              There it is.

              “As Christians we are not held to the standards of society.”

              Once you have announced how special and above societal rules you are because of the particular myth you have chosen to follow, you don’t get to talk about respect anymore. You demand respect, but will not extend it to anyone who believes differently.

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              Oh, so you’re absolutely fine with someone looking you up and down and telling you your clothes are too slutty or too frumpy, or both at the same time? If you want to hold women’s garments up to personal standards, prepare for your own personal to be judged harshly and you with it. After all, every woman can clearly meet the modest yet attractive yet powerful yet soft image that clothing is obviously supposed to project to every single man on the planet, right? I can assure you that whatever you wear, someone is going to call it out as inappropriate. Wear pants? Totally immodest and unbiblical according to a great many Christians. Wear jewelry? The same. Work outside the home and wear suits? Immodest and emasculating. Don’t cover your hair? You wily temptress, you. I, obviously, think all of that is bullshit. I bet you do too, but it does mean you’re dressing “provocatively” to many. Who are you to judge this woman’s clothing choice, then? And in what way is wearing provocative clothing “unscrupulous”? It’s not hurting anyone. What scruples could possibly be compromised?

              As Christians you are absolutely held to the standards of society. You are people living in this society and you had damned well be ready to follow its rules or go through the tremendous effort necessary to change them (ie, educating people why slut-shaming is bad is hard, but following the rules about women’s clothing is impossible and not fair, so I and others do the latter).

            • Drew

              So basically that quote allows you to judge everybody else based on YOUR criteria. But hey judge the hell out of everyone who doesn’t live up to your standards set 2000 years ago. Don’t see any problem here!

            • The Other Weirdo

              Do you mean to say that every individual, Christian or not, when contracting another Christian to perform a particular function, especially one that’s actually that person’s job, should know ahead of time whether that Christian person is going to honestly fulfill their contracted task?

              • phantomreader42

                Do you mean to say that every individual, Christian or not, when contracting another Christian to perform a particular function, especially one that’s actually that person’s job, should know ahead of time whether that Christian person is going to honestly fulfill their contracted task?

                Well, it’s not like one can actually expect christians to be trustworthy…

            • PA

              I am a Christian and could not disagree more with your post regarding the dress and the wedding that was canceled, even though I understand the perspective you are coming from.

              First of all, the dress, from my perspective, is simply gorgeous and not trashy at all. It covers what should be covered but is revealing enough to celebrate her figure and the event itself. I saw on another site someone said weddings should be “solemn” — huh!? Shouldn’t they be celebrations? Serious, yes, but celebratory, not solemn. This was a WEDDING, not a business meeting — and she dressed for a wedding in my view.

              Second of all, as a Christian, I get very frustrated that as Christians we tend to deemphasize the importance of sexuality within marriages and then wonder why the divorce rate is so why, when in fact sexuality is a major reason why many Christians have issues within their marriages.

              More to this point, while modesty is fine, why should the wedding dress be “modest” — when a wedding is the union of a man and woman spiritually, emotionally and yes PHYSICALLY! The dress just celebrates the sensuality of the event, which IT SHOULD BE! Particularly a church wedding, given Christianity (as it should, in my view), urges us to wait til marriage to have sex – shouldn’t the wedding celebrate that? Isn’t that dress part of that?

              I found this site after looking at several places where this story was referenced, where the comments that followed were largely supportive of the pastor. I am not, in this case. While it may have been his “right”, it was still NOT right – and what makes it ironic is that I assume he’d prefer the couple actually be married and enjoy relations in marriage — by refusing the service he delayed that.

              So sad in my view. Her dress was simply fantastic.

        • fiona64

          No matter what type of religious building regardless of sect you are
          attempting to enter you would never get in, in that dress and any bride
          with some common sense should have known that!!

          Citation needed. Please be sure to cite every religion known to the world, okay? Because you will have to do that in order to verify your assertion.

          • Guest

            Yeah, I think a lot of pagans would disagree with her, for one.

            • fiona64

              That was going to be my next point, if necessary. :-)

          • smrnda

            I know some pagans, and you could totally wear less around them and they wouldn’t care.

            • fiona64

              Yep.

            • Dress2Emperess

              Most of the ones I know prefer nudity! (Thank goodness, lol)!

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            *cough*skyclad*cough*

            • fiona64

              That was, in fact, exactly what I was thinking with my post. MM and BB.

        • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

          Please explain to me, how wearing that dress and expecting to get married is ‘marching over the rest of the worlds’ [rights]. It’s not like that dress is arresting people for criticizing it’s hem length, unlike Catholics in Poland and Orthodox in Russian arresting protestors for criticizing the church. It’s not like wearing that dress impedes other’s ability to get married to the ones they love, like a lot of Christians in the US.

          You see, when non-christians and non-theist push back and say we aren’t going to take your shit anymore, it’s not taking your rights away.

        • GCT

          What rights are we supposedly trampling? How are we being intolerant? When I say that the KKK are a racist organization, what rights of theirs am I trampling and how am I being intolerant?

          And, why should “common sense” be used to excuse slut-shaming?

        • badgerchild

          “I’m a PROUD Christian…”

          Um, psst… pride goeth before, and all that. Just saying.

          • Kate

            Right?! Why would anyone be proud of a damn religion? I can understand finding comfort in it, or enjoying all its little eccentricities, but pride?

            • badgerchild

              Simple. Because she’s actually feeling ashamed of it, and man, that’s a bad thing in Christianity, so it has to be denied. Loudly, so there’s no mistake about it.

        • Bitter Lizard

          Most Christians are deranged narcissists who think criticism counts as persecution, even with all their experience committing actual persecution of almost every minority group in history. You clearly fall into the category of “most”.

        • busterggi

          There’s this book often called the bible that says things like “women must submit to men”, “be silent and express no personal opinion” and “women have no right to tell men what to do” among other things.

          You must read it sometime.

        • Bobbie McMillan

          This bride marched over no one elses rights. And i believe your jesus said to go into the hedgerows and bring in the sinners. That was supposed to be a church of god where all are welcome not just those who meet your prudish ideas of what is right. I am sick and tired of you so-called christians thinking you can get away with being asses and persecuting others because they don’t believe in your fairy tales. Time for you to grow up and be an adult. This bride did nothing wrong. It just shows the preacher is a misogynistic jackass that thinks he is better than any other. I think it’s time to ban your sort of religion altogether.

        • smrnda

          Some religions aren’t so against the human body.

          And on rights, the pastor claimed the right to be an asshole. He’s got that right, but it doesn’t entitle him to cookies.

        • Tainda

          “I find it increasingly common that those who are SCREAMING the loudest for tolerance are in fact the MOST intolerant of anyone’s beliefs aside from their own”

          Me too. They’re called christians.

        • ianrey

          No, of course they don’t tell you that outright, Allison (anymore), they just institute rules that favor those circumstances.

        • http://shadus.org/ Shadus

          Yeah the huge minority is sure running over the christian religious reich, er I mean right, all over the place here in America. Why look at all the atheist politicians writing laws that… oh wait, that’s not happening at all is it?

          The reality is, Christians are the least oppressed religion in the states. They run roughshod over all the people of other religious faiths or those who lack a religion and are even favored by the military and national governments. Greater than 90% of our law makers are Christians and they often legislate from biblical teachings even though there is separation of church and state, so before you get on your high horse, I suggest you take a huge dose of reality and get your head out of your fantasy world.

        • Oranje

          Words in caps? Check. Multiple exclamation marks at the ends of sentences? Check. “You are all…” Check.

          Right, carry on.

        • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

          Why am I hearing bagpipes?

    • GubbaBumpkin

      hope your marriage is long and happy.

      And if not, book a trip to Glacier National Park.

    • BobaFuct

      Same thoughts here…not because I was thinking the dress was “inappropriate”, but my kneejerk response was “that’s just tacky”. But you’re absolutely right…if that’s the dress she wants to wear, who am I to judge? I will, however, say that this is a cautionary tale for those getting married in churches they aren’t familiar with and/or by pastors they don’t know…don’t take chances when it comes to your wedding! you may end up with an officiant that’s a huge asshole, like this guy is.

  • Bitter Lizard

    “You’re looking too sexy. I think you should just go home.” Said the church leader to the altar boy never.

    • b s

      Unless he meant to his own home.

  • Natalie

    It doesn’t matter where the church was, what kind of church it was, what her dressed looked like, whether they were members of the church…what matters is that is was the bride and grooms wedding day, they rented the church, they paid for a service, for whatever reasons, the facts are just that. The pastor agreed long before the wedding to perform the service, if she was wearing a thong bikini, he should have still performed the service. Plain and simple. Unless the bride and groom signed documentation that stated they had to wear certain clothing, there is no binding reason why she couldn’t wear that dress. It’s well within laws for public display. The whole idea that the pastor gets righteous an hour before the wedding when he agreed to perform a wedding to non members of the church of whom he probably had little interaction anyway, is in itself a sacrilege. This is just another example of the hypocritical, judgmental foundation that supports religious doctrine. Completely inane and without merit.

    • baal

      This ^. It’s not just the bride or wedding couple being punished. Folks paid for travel and hotels and might not be able to pay for a later date.

    • Quintin van Zuijlen

      Hmm, I guess they’ve got ample reason to file suit on that basis then. Undoubtedly we’ll still hear cries of anti-Christian persecution when a Christian judge rules that this (unwritten) contract made between Christians represented by Christian lawyers has been breached.

      • Surly Jim

        Who hires Christian lawyers when there’s a nice jewish boy on every corner?

        • Quintin van Zuijlen

          Is that a serious question?

          • badgerchild

            Occam’s razor.

        • Dress2Emperess

          Hilarious! lol

        • badgerchild

          Christians hire Christian lawyers, particularly ones in their own churches. Who else did you think they could they trust to protect their particular brands of Christian bigotry?

    • Phlobis McJordan

      At first I commented that the pastor could refuse service. Being a douche? Yes…but, not discriminatory. I mean, if you wanted a pastor – don’t be shocked when he objects to a sexy dress. But Natalie..your point is better. It’s a legal service, and depending on the outs in the contract on right to cancel, certainly there may be some restitution there. Although, I’m surprised they pick a ‘ministry’ that was 14 months old, operating out of an old shoe story…and neither of them were members. Why not a justice of the peace?!?

      Christian or not…if an officiant refuses service, it might be breach of contract. I don’t think the religious card matters here. Just someone who is prude.

  • TnkAgn

    I’m looking at the “manufacturer’s image” of this sexy model wearing this sexy wedding dress, and the only thing I can object to is…where the hell is her veil?

  • Amor DeCosmos

    So the Imam Minister made the woman cover up and wear a burkha modest dress. What else do you expect from Muslims Christians? Those Muslims Christians just want to impose Sharia Jesus law on everyone.

    • James Kujawa

      Mr. DeCosmos, I trust your health is good. Excellent, absolutely perfect response. Very well done. Kudos, to you Sir. Have a great day (no, week/no, year/ no, life).

      • J.p. Ladue

        huh?

        • Morgan Sheridan

          Do try to keep up. Sounds like you need an irony tune-up.

          • J.p. Ladue

            No, I just don’t understand what (no, week/no, year/ no, life) is supposed to mean.

            • Slatsmuckingchorew2221

              James Kujawa said “Have a great day,” then followed that with (no, week/no, year/ no, life). Clearly the intention was to replace the word “day” with these three alternatives. So what he’s saying is “Have a great day, no, have a great week, no, have a great year, no have a great life.”

              • J.p. Ladue

                I see, thank you for not being an asshat. :-)

                • strange banana

                  I’m sure he was sorely tempted.

                • J.p. Ladue

                  And why would that be?

            • Wing_Zero_75

              He was saying have a good day, then changed it to week, then year, and then life. The comma between no and the other words denote a pause and are seperate. It is meant as a good thing.

            • Morgan Sheridan

              Have a great day. No, (better) have a great week. No,(better yet) have a great year. No, (best) have a great life.

    • vermo

      Nobody forced them to marry in church. If you want to play the game, you have to follow the rules. And if you want to dress slutty for your marriage, go to Vegas.

      • Smiles

        Or maybe, just don’t choose a bigot to preform the ceremony.

        • ThatGuyWhoSaidThatThingOnce

          So don’t have a religious wedding in other words…

          • Fred

            If I remember correctly neither bride nor groom were religious. It was prolly setup and paid for by the parents who wanted their children to have a traditional wedding.

          • Christopher

            The pastor has signed a contractual obligation, and been paid to perform the ceremony. If he had concerns about what types of dress may have been at the ceremony, he should have mentioned this and made it clear at the time they arranged for the ceremony. The fact that he did not, and then, at the last minute, reneged on his contractual obligations to officiate over their wedding, puts the Pastor at liability here. Religious Freedom is good and all, but your Religious Freedom ends where another person’s Civil, Economic, and Contractual Rights as a Business Entity begin (A Contract is a business agreement between two Entities that wish to do business with one another, after all).

            Unless he included a clause in said contract that would allow him an “Out” clause, specifically applying to situations like these, he has opened himself, and possibly his church up to liability for breach of contract, repayment of all applicable fees, and possibly other legal consequences. Gripe about Religious Freedom all you want, but the Law is the Law. If you want to renege on your contractual business obligations, you better be prepared to pay the piper as part of your consequence.

            As for Vermo’s “You want to play the game, you have to follow the rules”, unless there was a specific Dress Code established in their Service Agreement/Contract, I’m afraid the Church is SOL here. There are different levels of “Offensiveness” for every person across cultural and age spectrums. I certianly wouldn’t find the wedding dress “Offensive”, were I to officiate. Risque, yes, but said day is more about the Bride and Groom than my feelings as an Officiate, so my feelings on the matter take a backseat to the job I am contractually bound to perform. Dura lex sed lex. (Translation to English from Latin, a language the good Father should be well acquainted with from Seminary: The Law is tough, but the Law is the Law)

            • http://www.cognation.net/ deancollins

              The bridge and groom are going to get an all expenses paid honeymoon once they take the priest/church to court.

              • J.p. Ladue

                Well we’d know if they are going to do that if this site actually did follow up work. The story just drops dead after the dress refusal.

              • kjiuejnjwqwnuincw

                Actually, you can’t force someone to perform a marriage ceremony. That’s why us gays got the right to marry legally, but still need to find a gay-friendly church if we want a religious wedding. Not that there are many churches still refusing to perform gay marriages (two of our local churches are led by an openly gay priest and pastor).

                • JesseS

                  I don’t want to belittle your argument, but its sideways from point.

                  You can’t force someone to marry you in the same way that you can’t force someone to build you a chair.

                  But if someone agrees to build you a chair, you pay them, and then they refuse, yah, you can totally sue them.

                  If the pastor had refused to accept the ceremony because of the dress from the start, that would be fine. In my analogy, he refused to AGREE to build the chair.

                  But he agreed, took, payment, and then refused to perform the ceremony. Yah, he can, and should, get sued for that.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  You are interjecting information into the story that was not there, JesseS. There is no mention of payment, and whatever he agreed to, I’m sure he did so with the presumption that it would be a ceremony that followed the guidelines of the church. Once he discovered they were not, he had every right to refuse, or make other arrangements.

                • JesseS

                  Ummm… are you trolling? Church’s are nearly always paid for these services (see article above about how its a big deal humanists are providing them for free to military couples). I’m not ‘interjecting’ anything, I’m making an ENTIRELY reasonable assumption, just as if you told me you went to the store and picked up some bread I would assume you paid for it, instead of stealing it.

                  Attack the substance of my argument if you disagree with it, don’t try and throw distractions.

                  Also, see my response below to J.P. Ladue, it doesn’t matter if he ‘presumed’ that they’d follow his beliefs on modesty, unless he explicitly said, before entering into the agreement, that there was a dress code he doesn’t have a legal, or moral, leg to stand on.

                • Marisa Martin

                  Yes they could have gotten married in a biker bar to match the brides style.

                • badgerchild

                  They could have gotten married anywhere, but they and the pastor agreed to get married in the church, and the pastor reneged on the deal in a particularly obnoxious, humiliating, and punishing way.

                  God, I’m getting tired of victim-blamers.

                • Dusty2

                  I see absolutely nothing wrong with the idea of wanting to be sexy for your guy on your wedding day.

                • Vanessa

                  In private not in public – parading oneself in such an attire on ones wedding day tells me that such individual wants to call attention to herself that has nothing to do with her intended mate….. she is not going to a club – that kind of worldly party attire was very unbecoming especially since they wanted a pastor to conduct their ceremony. No one has to be told by a judge how to dress for court – but no one dresses like that and enter any courtroom.. Why? they would be removed.

                • Sudden62

                  He was already contractually obligated. If it were a gay couple he would have never signed in the first place.

              • Rhett J D.

                The bridge….spell check much?

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Rhett, you demean yourself when you divert attention from the point of a conversational debate to attack someone’s typing or spelling skills. We are human and we make mistakes. Try to focus on the real issue, please.

                • Brett Allen Hensel

                  Bridge is spelled correctly. He just used the wrong word.

            • Kyder Dog

              She should have just taken it off and got married in her bra and panties.

              • occamskiss

                I don’t see any evidence of a bra in that picture.

            • hey

              She looks like she’s going to a club to party .. bridal shower looking dress

            • Ernest J Cauthen

              I agree with this 100%. Freedoms for everyone but when your choices start to infringe on others you no longer have the right to that choice. You said you would do it, you were paid, you may not LIKE what she is wearing but you will do the wedding. The Bible teaches us to honor our debts and pay them in full. You were paid money and you owe a service. If the pastor really wanted to “life in righteousness” he would have done the ceremony.

            • Dress2Emperess

              Christopher, I saw nothing in the story that discussed a contract. As a secularist, I could care less about religion, but I respect those boundaries of others. If an individual is in a Catholic church, they know and understand the tenets of Catholicism, same with Jewish, Muslim, etc. A church is not just a building, it is a belief system, and this young women presented herself in a manner that clashed with the belief system of this church, its pastor as its representative. The burden of understanding is on the BRIDE’S shoulders, not the ministers. Just because people EXPECT certain things does not mean they are ENTITLED to those things. If I hire a vegan catering company to provide food for an event, signed contract and all, then show up the day of the event expecting steak and potatoes, the ignorance and responsibility is on ME. I will say that in the future, this pastor would be wise to avoid another such incident by requesting to see the bride’s dress ahead of time, and it is unfortunate that the bride’s day was spoiled., but that’s life.

              • Christopher

                In most cases where a Church Official is called in to officiate over a wedding service, there is usually an agreement of sorts written up, or informally agreed upon. For use of business law, it can be treated as a Contract for Services or Service Agreement. Even if it was an informal agreement, if they made a “Donation” to the church with an “Understanding” that the Father would officiate over their wedding proceedings, it lacks Hardcopy on Paper to back it up, but it is still a form of service agreement, nonetheless.

                Weddings are not small events, and take months of planning. You raise a very good point, I will note, though. Namely, “Just because people EXPECT certian things, does not mean they are ENTITLED to them.” On this, I am wholly in agreement with you. The Father agreed to officiate over a wedding ceremony, whether in exchange for a fee or a church donation. The Father expected that the bride would be wearing a “traditional” wedding dress, as shown by his reaction to the dress. He did not agree to officiate over a wedding with a traditional wedding dress, even if that’s what he was expecting, else if he did, then the onus would have been on the bride and her family, since he would/should have brought this up months ahead of time.

                He agreed, per their business arrangement, to officiate over their wedding, the fact that the bride was wearing an unorthodox dress (To say the least) is irrelevant, and has nothing to do with the fact that he agreed to officiate over their wedding, barring his assertion of a dress code of sorts when he agreed to officiate their ceremony.

                If he had refunded the donation and/or applicable fees, that would be another matter, and I wouldn’t even have a problem aside from the irritation provided by the roadblock. If that were the case, I would be inclined to agree with you, and say “It’s unfortunate, but that’s life.”
                However, the outrage from the family, and lack of mention of a refunding of fees/donation from the church, implies that this is not the case. If the Father apologized and calmly refunded the fees, there would be little to be outraged about, and even I would be much more understanding of the situation.

                I, too, respect the Religious boundaries of others, though I am not religious myself. Living in the Bible Belt, once you are known as a Secularist, you practically must demonstrate respect for others’ belief, if you don’t expect to get lambasted yourself by everyone in town. However, I still expect Religion and Churches to follow the Law, where business agreements are concerned, and after showing this article to several of my friends around town, both Religious and Not, they all seem inclined to agree that what the Pastor did was a “Dick Move” if not illegal.

                Remember that there are different thresholds for what different people, and even churches, consider “Offensive”. The Church I was raised in, prior to my split from Christianity, had no problem with the Youth Group members showing up in Daisy Dukes, or the guys wearing Tank Tops to Class. I’m sure some of the other Southern Baptist churches in the area would beg to differ, but for us, it was the way our church rolled. Unless the Pastor made clear when they first made the agreement to officiate over the wedding that risque dress would be inappropriate, whatever the context, he lost his right to walk away, without consequence, so soon before the ceremony was set to begin.

            • rwlawoffice

              I looked at the article and did not see the contract, nor did I see where they told the pastor what she would be wearing and he agreed to perform the ceremony with that knowledge, only to reneg. So I do not see where your anaylsis has any factual basis.

              • Christopher

                The pastor agreed to perform the ceremony. He (Obviously, else he would not have walked out of the service he agreed to perform at the last minute) did not ask if any special arrangements or alterations to the “traditional” ceremony would be performed, as such, he has no right to object after he has already agreed to officiate. Here is a conference discussion between several Pastors regarding the incident. Even other elders of the very faith the Pastor is a clergy of agree that, not only should he have sat down and made sure, step by step, what was to be included, they agree that even if he refused to officiate, there was another Minister willing to sign off on the certificate and officiate for them.

                It’s not often you find Secularists and Believers agreeing on issues. Regardless of his own feelings of the matter, he had absolutely no right to dictate that another Clergy could not officiate, even though he had volunteered to. This would be akin to saying, “Well, I can’t go to bat, so instead of letting in a pinch hitter, we’ll just have to call off the Game. Hey Ref! We Forfeit!” The action was juvenile, asinine, and more than just a dick move.

                Unless you can show me a church in the Houston area that does not ask for fees and/or donations for a wedding ceremony, I’m afraid your factual basis claim falls flat. Practically every church charges for wedding services, whether it’s to rent the building for the wedding service, or for the services provided by the Pastor officiating. Even barring the lack of a formal contract, his behavior was inexcusable, and could be argued in court to be malicious, given the nature of the day, event and the presence of an official willing to perform the ceremony in his absence. The fact remains, whatever the context, the Pastor opened himself and his Church, to liability and a potential suit.

                Link to aforementioned Videoconference of Church Leaders: http://ipost.christianpost.com/news/pastor-refuses-to-perform-wedding-ceremony-because-of-the-brides-sexy-dress-11017/

              • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                As a lawyer you should know that a verbal contract or an oral agreement is binding. They don’t need to show you a bloody contract, you fool, it was an implied contract, and the pastor failed to perform.

                Now, unless the pastor can show that there was an agreed-upon dress code, he (and you) are out of luck — his actions were a breach of contract.

            • Paul_Robertson

              You have assumed much regarding what is and is not in the contract. I’m quite sure that the contract didn’t say that the bride could wear whatever she chooses. It may, on the other hand, stipulate the opposite. Even if it doesn’t, the church has sufficient notoriety when it comes to “modesty” that it would be an implied term; a church wedding contract is not a mere venue hire, or fee for service. It also involves the couple submitting themselves to the rules of the church, or at least those regarding marriage.

          • Dress2Emperess

            Right, don’t have a religious wedding. If the couple were actually concerned about religion and its tenets, one, especially a minister, would naturally assume they would abide by ALL those tenets, including the tenet of modesty. To me, it’s like going to a vegetarian restaurant and complaining because they won’t serve you meat.

        • cw

          it was in a church…

        • rwlawoffice

          So a preacher that stands up for the churches position on modesty in ceremonies that they are asked to perform becomes a bigot? You guys throw that word around so much it has lost all meaning.

          • badgerchild

            The church’s position itself, as with many other official positions of the church. Decent people don’t excuse bigotry just because it occurs on private property. Religion doesn’t get a free pass to act badly.

      • phantomreader42

        And how, pray tell, is one supposed to follow the rules when the pastor changes them on a whim without notice?

        • yousosilly

          yes this pastor just created these rules of modest they certainly haven’t always been church protocol

          • jamescrackscorn

            Were the rules posted for all to see?

            • CrisBob

              They were absolutely posted. In the basement, in a locked filing cabinet located in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying “Beware of the Leopard”.

              • Tyrrlin Flamestrike

                +1 Internets for the “Hitchhiker’s” reference.

          • SILENTSAM69

            It has never been a written rule, just one that any pastor can make work how he feels.

          • phantomreader42

            If these rules had ALWAYS been church protocol, then they could have easily been communicated in advance. They were not. If the pastor felt it was his job to pre-approve the wedding dress, then he could have maybe mentioned it at some point more than an hour before the ceremony. He did not. Not only do delusional religious nuts not have any legal or contractual right to expect people to read their minds and follow rules they made no attempt to notify anyone of, the bible the pastor claims to follow doesn’t have a particularly high opinion of sorcery.

            • J.p. Ladue

              These rules were probably not mentioned in advance because the church/pastor have never had to deal with this before.

              • JesseS

                Legally that doesn’t matter. Thats why Terms of Service are up front, and you sign at the END of a contract (and frequently have to initial each important paragraph). Rules need to be entered into with knowledgeable consent to be legally binding (or morally, for that matter, but we can only enforce legalities).

            • Breeezyboy

              And how was the pastor to know ahead of time that the bride would show up dressed like a whore?

              • Kieran Dyke

                You seem very well acquainted with how whores dress.

              • phantomreader42

                Well, if he’s so fragile he’d have a terminal case of the vapors based on her clothing, he could have ASKED what she planned to wear. Like I said, in the comment you responded to without bothering to READ it, “if the pastor felt it was his job to pre-approve the wedding dress, then he could have maybe mentioned it at some point more than an hour before the ceremony”.
                And while we’re at it, where did you become such an authority on the clothing of whores? You sound like a violent and abusive pimp.

              • Dress2Emperess

                Breeezyboy, there is no need to call the woman a whore just because she has a revealing dress on. Her dress has an appropriate arena, it’s just not in this church. Men can act any way they wish and they don’t get called names for it. Talk about being judgmental!

                • Revenwyn

                  I am sorry but that dress is not appropriate to wear outside of the bedroom…

                • badgerchild

                  Thanks, Grandma, I see you’re getting the hang of the Internet. Now that you’ve made it here, try getting your mind around the idea that you’re not everyone’s mother and entitled to tell them what they may wear when they leave the house.

                • Revenwyn

                  For your information, I am 30 and have been online since I was 13. Most churches I know have a modesty standard in regards to wedding apparel. For one, this dress is trashy and makes her look like she just wants to get laid. It’s not the kind of thing that shows that she feels that she’s valuable for anything other than a sexual object. I’m not saying that a woman needs to go full out prude with neckline up to the chin and long sleeves like I was forced to for my wedding dress but most churches want minimal or no cleavage in their dresses. Some have rules that also require straps. Others require some sort of sleeve. If you want a church wedding then don’t think you can get away in something that looks like you’re trying to hook up at a bar.

                • badgerchild

                  Yes, ma’am. Your personal pearl-clutching horror that someone had the brass to wear a sexy dress to her own wedding is irrelevant, however. What is relevant is that she was disproportionately and cruelly mistreated by someone she had every reason to expect would honor his word. After all, we’re supposed to expect Christians to be fair and tolerant, right?

                • Revenwyn

                  I can’t even comprehend how she could possibly think that if she wore something like this for her wedding that he could possibly allow it. She broke HIS trust first by wearing it. Now I’m sure that he also could never comprehend someone walking into his church to get married who WAS dressed like that, but I believe he was right in what he did, at the very least he had the right if there was no formal contract. He couldn’t have people thinking he condoned such ill manner of dress.

                • badgerchild

                  Your incredulity does not give the pastor the right to purposely humiliate her and damage her economically and emotionally. She did not cause him any harm. He caused her substantial harm. This is patent even before you consider the merit of the argument that it isn’t the Church’s place to condemn someone for wearing revealing clothing. They can express their opinion, but it is not a defensible opinion in modern tolerant society.

                  Your inexplicably vehement outrage at another woman’s revealing dress says much about your own dysfunctional attitude with regard to sex and how other people conduct their lives, by the way. I don’t know if this is because you are religiously brainwashed, or whether you just feel threatened by a piece of clothing that shows skin. How were you harmed? Don’t you think you’d be happier if you lost a bit of that death-grip on other people’s choices?

                • Revenwyn

                  If he had allowed the wedding to go on in his church a) people would have thought he was condoning the dress, b) that dress would likely cause men in the audience to lust after her. Well, I can guarantee one thing, she was no virgin bride.

                • badgerchild

                  Oh, the poor men who can’t control themselves. Oh, the soiled bride. Fetch my smelling salts, Alphonse, I must retire to my chamber.

                • JesseS

                  Can I just say, Badgerchild, that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your posts on this article. I hope you are recovering well in your chambers and that Alphonse has supplied adequate libations to calm you.

                • badgerchild

                  Glenmorangie. Alphonse is a master. ;)

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Oh, lovely. More slut-shaming. You need to STFU — the dress was just fine, the pastor was in breach of contract.

                • Leigha7

                  “Well, I can guarantee one thing, she was no virgin bride.”

                  How in the fricking world can you guarantee that? Literally the only way you could know this beyond a shadow of doubt is you saw her having sex. Technically, even being pregnant isn’t sufficient proof nowadays.

                  If wearing clothes that show a lot of skin proves you aren’t a virgin, then half my female classmates in 6th grade weren’t virgins because of how popular crop tops were at the time. Those poor 11 and 12 year old girls, being deflowered simply by putting on a shirt.

                • KS

                  What a load of bollocks you’re spouting! Humiliation? Unusual cruelty? I suggest that you immediately look up the true meaning of these words in a reliable dictionary. I am afraid that you spend too much time on the Web, and your perception of reality has become utterly warped as a result. Believe it or not, but there are still places where proper attire and manners are valued, and a church has the right to instill a dress code on its premises — whether or not that agrees with your notions of a “modern, tolerant society” or not. My house, my rules! The church’s house, the church’s rules!

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Your slut-shaming has been noted. It’s not helping.

                  That dress is fine. If she wanted to get married in the nude, that would be fine, too.

                  The point here is, the pastor can not walk out on his contractual obligations just because he doesn’t like her dress.

                • tabssc

                  You are a badger, aren’t you? Most women would not show up dressed like that for a church wedding. I am no prude, but you’re in the house of God and supposed to show reverence and decorum. BTW – most pastors are paid AFTER the ceremony and there is usually no written contract. It was his place of work and, therefore, his call.

                • badgerchild

                  Right, right, yet another “my house my rules” apologist. I suppose you and the others think any rules he chooses to make in his own church are perfectly fine, no matter who he harms or how.

                • KS

                  Yes, that is exactly what I think. If you don’t like the rules of the house, you are welcome to leave. That’s why the carpenter left a big opening in the front — it’s called a door.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  oral contracts are just as valid as written contracts. He agreed to perform the ceremony, he is bound by his word.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  You seem obsessed with the fact that it was ‘her wedding’, as if that gives the bride a license to make any demand she delights in, reasonable or unreasonable. You’ve repeated that rationalization many times. I sense that your wedding day must have been hijacked by perhaps an overbearing mother, and you had less than a perfect experience? While a bride has the expectation of being in control of her special day, that expectation stops when she tries to infringe on the beliefs and customs of someone else. If she and the groom wanted to stand there naked, regardless of whose day it is, she is not entitled to do so.

                • badgerchild

                  You’re a very bad psychic, and also a very poor thinker. Your compassion skills are also somewhat wanting. You prefer to privilege the abusive pastor from a church you supposedly left, behavior that caused the bride harm, over the bride’s harmless choice. That says a lot more about you than any random shooting-in-the-dark, projected motives I could possible ascribe to you.

                • Leigha7

                  ” If she and the groom wanted to stand there naked, regardless of whose day it is, she is not entitled to do so.”

                  And why not? Surely you’re not oblivious to the fact that people have gotten married in the nude before. The setting does matter, because it’s illegal to be naked in certain settings, but if it’s legal and it’s what the couple wants, then why shouldn’t they be able to?

                  Yes, it might make people uncomfortable, but the only people who HAVE to be there are the two people getting married and the person doing the marrying (who probably should be consulted about actual, outright nudity, but since nobody was naked here, that’s irrelevant).

                • JesseS

                  I COMPLETELY disagree.

                  I do not think the dress is either trashy nor that it “makes her look like she wants to get laid”.

                  I think it shows confidence and sex-positiveness. More to the point it covers considerably more skin (by, no exaggeration, at least one order of magnitude) than the average beach bikini.

                  I find your comments on it shockingly condescending. Just because you wouldn’t wear it doesn’t make it wrong.

                  Admittedly I wouldn’t wear it either but thats more because my beard and hairy legs don’t go well with white.

                  Maybe if it was the same cut but made out of red lumberjack flannel. I can totes pull off lummberjack flannel.

                • badgerchild

                  That plunging V-neckline and midriff ring can’t help but call attention to your manly torso, as well. For all the references in wedding fashion design to the runways of Paris and to the classical era (not to mention the plantations of the antebellum South and the demimonde of old New Orleans), few have thought to honor the overlooked and distinguished history of the Canadian wilderness. I applaud you. Magnifique.

                • Leigha7

                  “It’s not the kind of thing that shows that she feels that she’s valuable for anything other than a sexual object.”

                  Fun fact: Everyone on the planet is valuable for more than just a sexual object, regardless of what they do or don’t wear (or, though you didn’t mention this, how many people they do or don’t have sex with, or how often, or in what manner). It’s something you get simply for being a human being.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  It’s always easy to to name-call with you, isn’t it, badgerchild? While Revenwyn obviously has some strong ideas on modesty her/himself, there is no need to bash her/him with your demeaning, passive-aggressive, insult hammer. You sound emotionally immature. I wouldn’t be a bit surprise to know you have great difficulty maintaining stable personal relationships in life. You might want to look into some anger management counseling, honestly. So sad.

                • badgerchild

                  I’m so sorry you’re sad. Maybe you should look into some medication for that.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  That’s a matter of opinion.

          • Cole Stanchfield

            They haven’t. They used to run brothels out of the churches good sir. They being the Catholic Church themselves. It is entirely up to the officiator, though to refuse that late in the service after already agreeing, accepting payment, and not stating any concrete requisites for attire, that is 100% his fault. No one can force him to follow through, but he is then responsible for the consequences for breaking an agreement. Also note there is nothing in any religious text or doctrine dictating a women’s dress attire at her wedding. So this was baseless; on his whims only.

        • Vermo

          I’m pretty sure there must be a “thou shall not dress like a slut” somewhere in the bible…

          • phantomreader42

            Would that be the same bible that forbids trimming male facial hair? Or for that matter, touching the skin of a dead pig (like the leather shoes formerly sold in the store that became a church)? The same bible that says you should pluck your eye out if what you see gives you sinful thoughts (which the pastor did not do)?
            The bible says a lot of stupid shit, and christians only pretend to care about the parts of it that are immediately convenient for them.

            • Vermo

              Then, again, if you don’t agree with the bible, don’t marry in church!! Plain and simple!

              • vanceco

                what does the bible have to do with her dress?

                • Dress2Emperess

                  It’s in a CHURCH, which has religious restrictions on modesty. Her dress reveals more than their definition of modesty allows. Regardless of how we as individuals define modesty, when we expect to enter into someone else’s domain, i.e. church, we have to follow the guidelines of that domain. They have the right, because they are a PRIVATE organization, to set certain guidelines, and they have the right to enforce those guidelines. This woman’s dress was an affront to their guidelines.

                • GCT

                  Whose definition of modesty? Which sect’s definition? Where is the line drawn between what is modest enough and not?

                  And, if they accepted money for a service that they are conducting for the public, they don’t have the right to refuse service at the last second.

                  Lastly, slut-shaming is never OK, and the fact that it comes from a church is no excuse.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  That’s just it, GCT, it is THAT churches definition of modesty, defined by THAT minister in THAT sect. If one doesn’t even know the tenets of the church they are getting married in, they don’t need to be requesting sanctions from that church. It’s ridiculous. We are not talking about modesty at large, we are talking about modesty as it exists in that church, with that pastor. This was a HOLINESS church (did anyone read the very first sentence in this article????). As a private organization, they have the right to define the parameters of their organization, and it is the responsibility of those who enter there to acquaint themselves with those rules, NOT the other way around. And there is also NO MENTION (can I point this out enough, people!) that the pastor was being paid, but that point is completely irrelevant IN A RELIGIOUS SETTING. Churches, while they may receive monies for services, aren’t performing the ceremony for the sake of commerce, they are performing a RITUAL to sanctify the marriage.

                  It is irrelevant whether we ourselves are religious or agree with the restrictions set forth by this church and pastor. The point is that this couple should have acquainted themselves with the tenets of the church and followed them. To do anything else is just ignorant.

                  Agree, however, that slut-shaming is never OK, but I didn’t read that he did that. That was done here on this blog. He simply said her dress was too immodest for his church.

                • GCT

                  That’s just it, GCT, it is THAT churches definition of modesty, defined by THAT minister in THAT sect.

                  Then it is that pastor’s obligation to be up front about what is and is not acceptable to him before he agrees to do a public service (if that’s even an option for doing a public service). And, it does not excuse his slut-shaming.

                  If one doesn’t even know the tenets of the church they are getting married in, they don’t need to be requesting sanctions from that church.

                  We both know that they could have been getting married there because a grandparent wanted it to happen there or for any number of reasons that might preclude them from knowing what this particular pastor thought (besides the fact that they are not mind readers).

                  As a private organization, they have the right to define the parameters of their organization, and it is the responsibility of those who enter there to acquaint themselves with those rules, NOT the other way around.

                  Not if they are providing a public service. Further, if they have rules, it is incumbent upon the church to make those rules clear. For the pastor to simply claim that some rule is violated at the eleventh hour is not acceptable.

                  And there is also NO MENTION (can I point this out enough, people!) that the pastor was being paid, but that point is completely irrelevant IN A RELIGIOUS SETTING.

                  I reject your religiously privileged argument here. Religions are not held above the standards set for everyone and everything else. You do not get to claim special privileges for religion.

                  Churches, while they may receive monies for services, aren’t performing the ceremony for the sake of commerce, they are performing a RITUAL to sanctify the marriage.

                  No, they are performing a civic function. If they want to pretend that they are performing some further ritual and sanctifying something, that’s between them and the couple getting married.

                  Agree, however, that slut-shaming is never OK, but I didn’t read that he did that. That was done here on this blog.

                  It was done by him and on this blog.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  GCT, I am not invoking ‘religious privilege’, I am a secularist. But WITHIN THE CONFINES OF HIS CHURCH, he HAS religious privilege. That is what his church is.

                  NO, it is NOT a civic function, it is a RITUALISTIC function, as designed by a religion.

                  As to the ‘slut-shaming’, he simply said, ACCORDING TO THE INFORMATION PROVIDED TO US, she would need to cover her breasts to meet the dictated (yes, DICTATED) tenets of the church as represented by him.

                  It matters not what our personal beliefs are, GCT, in this situation, the bride has entered into HIS arena, it is HIS playhouse, it is HIS rules. She is free to go elsewhere, or she can stay AND ABIDE BY HIS RULES.

                  No one is arguing that the rules are fair or balanced, or that they benefit society in any way. But under the set of circumstances, as they exist, he is in the right, unfortunately.

                • badgerchild

                  The immoral and abusive rules of a religion do not trump people’s human rights, just as we no longer acknowledge the old Roman right of a paterfamilias to put to death misbehaving members of his household. Things that are not right are not made right just because they’re done in private on someone’s property.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  She does not have the ‘human right’ to wear that dress in his church, lets be serious, for goodness sake. We aren’t discussing world tragedies and atrocities, this is about dressing a certain way in a certain place. That is all. Yes, religion is oppressive, yes, there are many things which are not ‘right’ because they’re done in private, but that is not the issue here. To argue anything different is just unintelligent. Not because you don’t agree with me, but because it is not the issue at hand.

                • badgerchild

                  Just because the oppression isn’t important to you doesn’t mean it’s unimportant and we should just tolerate it. You’re trying to defend the bad actor’s bad actions, bottom line.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  It is obvious you are unyielding in your belief, as am I. I live my life with the ability to view a situation without interjecting my personal feelings and beliefs into the situation. I’ve given multiple illustrations of situations that serve to enlighten those who can see. If you wish to use your hatred of religion to excuse the short-sightedness of a clueless bride, then you are free to do so. I wish you good day. I’m needed elsewhere at the moment.

                • badgerchild

                  Yeah, sure you are. Someone undoubtedly needs you to don a cape and tights and defend the abuser against the clueless person they abused.

                • Christopher

                  Despite my disagreement with Dress2Empress elsewhere in the comments, I have to agree with them, on the point that she does not have any kind of “Human Right” to wear the above-mentioned dress. If you’re going to claim a “Human Right” to wear whatever they want, you’re going to have to show me where in US Law it states that a person has a right to wear what they want, regardless of how risque it is.

                  We restrict people’s conduct of dress all the time, whether it’s requiring a Uniform for work, requiring Semi-Formal or Formal Dress for a Black-Tie Event, or even a School Dress Code. Sure we allow for exercise of Right of Expression, such as allowing High Schoolers to wear armbands in solidarity with a political movement (Tinker v Des Moines Independent School District 393 US 503) but we do not consider the banning of wearing a sling bikini to school an infringement on “Rights” by any measure of the term.

                  My grounds for disapproving the Pastor’s actions come from deciding, at the last minute, that he was not going to go through with the session, based upon something he SHOULD have made clear at the beginning, and even if he refused to go through with the ceremony, there was an Official who could have provided the agreed-upon service. If you’re going to decry the actions of the Pastor, you’re going to have to do a better job than just scream “Religious Bigot!” and “Christian Oppression!”, in short, you have to show WHY their stance is wrong, on a legal basis. This is partly why Secularists and Atheists have been given such a bad name. People want to shout and scream oppression, same as the Believers do, except they refuse to back their screams up with rational and sound arguments. The Believers can at least fall back on “Tradition and God”. When you’re trying to change the status quo, cries of persecution alone don’t cut it.

                • badgerchild

                  Dress2Emperess was abused by and with the blessing of her former religion, and left it. I was abused by and with the blessing of my former religion, and left it. The difference between us is that she excuses the pastor’s bad behavior on the ground that he should be entitled to mistreat people in his own “house”, even though she was the subject of mistreatment at the hands of that denomination in the past, and I refuse to excuse anyone’s mistreatment of people, even in their own “house”, even more so because I was the subject of mistreatment in the past. People who think other people have the freedom to abuse just because they are in a building or on property that they control are abuse apologists. I am shocked that Dress2Emperess is defending the bad practices and abuses that she herself escaped. I’m surprised that you go out of your way to defend her for defending such things.

                • Christopher

                  I never said I was “Defending” anyone. FYI, the two of you weren’t the only ones abused with the blessings of your respective churches. The point remains, I never “Defended” anyone, especially not Dress2Empress. In fact, I adamantly retained my position of overall disagreeing with her, but with the exception that one does not have a “Human Right” to wear what they want, regardless of the situation.

                  If you would read through my former comments, you would see that I have been just as vehement in decrying the actions of the Pastor as Badgerchild up there was. But I guess that’s too much effort when you’re going for a knee-jerk, emotionally-charged, rhetoric-strewn comeback, huh?

                  The only thing I asserted in the post you quoted from, is that there is not a “Human Right” anywhere in the US Legal Code, for a person to wear whatever it is they wish, regardless of the consequences. If you disagree, then find where in the US Legal Code my position is faulty, and reply back to me. And I’ll want either Verse and Statute or Case Law Reference.

                  This is what I was talking about, with Secularists and Atheists getting a bad name. Defending your position on an issue is great, but if all you’re going to do is throw out Rhetoric and Knee-Jerk Retorts, without regard for the consequences, you’ll alienate even those who are your potential allies…

                • badgerchild

                  You didn’t have to announce you were defending anyone. It is clear enough from your post that you agree with her that the pastor has the right to dictate terms on his own turf, whether those terms are defensible or not.

                  Incidentally, I think the law you’re looking for is the First Amendment to the US Constitution, that guarantees both the right of free speech (interpreted as “free expression”) and implicitly guarantees the separation of church and state. Congress is barred from making laws that specifically respect a religious institution, but the existing laws and instances of case law that cover instances of discrimination, default of contracts, harming someone economically and emotionally, and other applicable criminal or tortious acts apply whether someone is inside or outside a church building.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  badgerchild, I feel so sorry for you. Obviously, you were unable to let go of your rage and pain enough to live the rest of your life in peace. Fortunately for me, I have released all the negativity from my life so that I am not blinded by hatred when trying to observe a given situation. In my opinion, you are still allowing them to control you, just in a different way.

                  In no way do I believe that this pastor was in anyway a peaceful representative of humanity. Pious men like him have been abusing and suppressing women, as well as men, for thousands of years.

                  However, our society allows individuals to create organizations which dictate a certain set of rules, and they are given the privilege, right, righteous, or otherwise, of enforcing those rules, and turning away those who do not meet their imposed standard. This woman did not meet this minister’s imposed standard.

                  Regardless of whether there was an agreement, contract, etc., there are also what is known as implied agreements. Just as the pastor did not feel he had to explain that the bride could not ride up the isle naked, on horseback, like Lady Godiva, he had every expectation not to have to explain that a Holiness church was not the proper arena for the type of dress she chose to wear.

                  So you can cling to your poisonous hatred for all things religious to rationalize this bride’s faux paus, but in the end, this asshat pastor, in this arena, under this set of circumstances, had every right to refuse to endorse what he defined as an affront to his set of standards. He may not be RIGHT, but he is CORRECT.

                • badgerchild

                  Please try to stick to the facts of the case. Pretending I am mentally ill is a discredit to you because everyone knows you have no knowledge of the facts. It is also insulting to people who actually have mental illnesses with which they are struggling. You carry through with your whitewashing of the facts by attempting to fabricate a justification of the pastor’s harm. The fact that you choose to do so rather than to recognize the rights of the actual victim is telling.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Christopher, (and all others) I want to make it perfectly clear that I in no way think that GIVING the pastor, or any other representative of religion or other oppressive organization, is something I support. I do not. I also feel the pastor should have found an alternative way to resolve the situation so that the expense of all involved was recognized and not lost. I don’t agree with the manner in which he chose to deal with it.

                  But, that being said, and please, Christopher, let’s not re-iterate the whole ‘contract’ issue here again, I think it is arbitrary, the bride and her family had to be completely clueless to think they could expect to show up in a Holiness church wearing that type of dress. Most Holiness churches are as strict with modesty as the Amish, and if one is in any way connected to such a church, directly or indirectly, that is the minimal they should know about it.

                  I also think that there were several alternatives the bride could have chosen after being told it was unacceptable, inserting a handkerchief into the bodice, for starters. She could have removed it after the pastor declared them sufficiently married, so that her photographs reflected her day in the manner she preferred.

                  I feel that both sides could have made concessions that would have enabled the wedding to continue, albeit not perfectly, but the entire day need not have been spoiled. Neither side was interested, apparently, in being mature and reasonable.

                  I still maintain that it was completely understandable (NOT acceptable, but understandable) that the minister refused to marry her because of his belief she was immodest. That was the tenet of the church, that was the tenet of the pastor.

                • badgerchild

                  Once again I’m amazed at the lengths to which you go to excuse the abusive atmosphere from which you escaped. It’s almost as if you don’t care who else is harmed by it.

                • Leigha7

                  There’s a difference between not having a right to do something, and having something be in poor taste. In the US, we have a right to wear whatever we want, wherever we want, with the exceptions of 1. public nudity is illegal in most places, 2. most stores have a “no shirt, no shoes, no service” policy (which I’ve seen several stores break on occasion), and 3. school or work dress codes that are formally laid out.

                  If you want to go to a restaurant wearing a bikini, a see-through beach cover up, and flip-flops, you can. It’s allowed. You have that right. People will probably look at you funny, but you have the right to do so. It’s something the rules of etiquette dictate shouldn’t be done, but that doesn’t mean you CAN’T do it.

                  The same applies here. She has EVERY right to wear that dress in church (and, to be honest, I saw girls in church in high school who wore clothes that were nearly as revealing, and that was to actual services, not a private wedding where only invited guests would be present). Is it in bad taste? A little. It’s a fairly revealing dress for a church, especially if the church is more conservative. But everything is covered (you can see a small amount of the model’s breasts, but that may or may not be true for the bride depending on how well-endowed she is).

                  Here’s my problem with it (from the article linked): “Two days later the couple is still not married and is currently looking into options to recoup money their family lost with travel, food, and other expenses.” The pastor cost them extra money by refusing to marry them, and he should have to pay that. It’s absolutely ridiculous that they should have to waste all the time and money they put into planning the wedding, just because he didn’t like her dress. Usually the reception is booked and planned well in advance, and he forced them to 1. let all of that go to waste and 2. re-book and re-plan at the last minute. Not to mention that, if they had a sentimental reason for wanting to be married on that particular day, he screwed that up.

                • KS

                  Is your record broken? All I hear from you is blablabla. You keep babbling on about immoral, abusive, humiliating, cruel, etc. rules and religious norms, but it’s a bloody dress code! She didn’t get sentenced to death, to life-long servitude or public whipping!

                • GCT

                  Yes, you are invoking religious privilege. You’re claiming that calling this religious somehow provides the pastor and church with special privileges.

                  NO, it is NOT a civic function, it is a RITUALISTIC function, as designed by a religion.

                  People were getting married long before Xianity or the other Abrahamic religions came on the scene. Marriage is not inherently religious, and the function of the pastor is first and foremost to the civic part. Once again, the religious attachments are between the pastor and the participants.

                  As to the ‘slut-shaming’, he simply said, ACCORDING TO THE INFORMATION PROVIDED TO US, she would need to cover her breasts to meet the dictated (yes, DICTATED) tenets of the church as represented by him.

                  He refused her a service because her dress was too revealing and she was not being modest enough in his opinion. IOW, he was slut-shaming her.

                  But under the set of circumstances, as they exist, he is in the right, unfortunately.

                  No, he’s not, regardless of whether the rules allow him to do what he did (I’m not sure they do). Just because he has the ability to do something by his rights doesn’t mean that he’s not an asshat for exercising those rights. People have the right to be racist assholes too.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  You’re wrong, and it’s been explained several times why.

                  Also, THEY HAD A CONTRACT WITH THE PRIEST.

                  You don’t get to duck out of performance of your end of the contract just because you disapprove of how the other person is dressed.

                • vanceco

                  how does her dress imply that she “doesn’t believe in the bible”…? did it contain more than one kind of fabric or some other biblical abomination like that?

              • aidanjt

                Don’t agree with which parts? Surely you don’t support slavery? Or selling your daughters to their rapists, or other such bronze age barbarisms? If the Bible is to be taken 100% literally and in its entirety, then the entirety of it is inhuman, evil, and worthless. If it’s only to be taken in part, whichever parts you feel like clinging onto then it’s entirely arbitrary and pointless as a ‘rule book’. Or should we be open to resurrect stoning adulteresses to death whenever some pastor loses what’s left of his marbles?

                Could it be, that human beings have their own innate sense of morality, and they just chop up the Bible to fit how they think in an attempt to legitimise it?

                • Bruce Berg

                  Last time I checked, Jesus forgive the adulteress and shamed the hypocrites. And let we think we are above them, all of us can get self righteous, even in our posts. Grace and Justice are always hard to merge.

                • Brett Allen Hensel

                  Ding Ding. We got a winner here.

              • Harry

                marriage is not an original Christian custom. Marriage has been around for thousands of years before Christianity or whatever you dub yourself as. Not only that but it’s not individual to Christianity either. Jews, Muslims, atheists, pagans, Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, and a thousand other religions alike all practice this thing called marriage. Even before that a lot of ancient tribes and ancient civilizations like the Incas, Mayas, Aztecs,and need I mention Mesopotamia and Babylonia, all had their own customs. They are some of the oldest civilizations to ever have inhabited earth that we know of today and they had their own marriage customs. They were around long before most religions including Christianity. In short, marriage does not belong to one religion but to many. I challenge you to step outside of the box and research further into other cultures not to adopt their beliefs but to find out what the rest of mankind is up to as well. But you may not have understood anything that I typed so it’s okay. Remember, education is one of the strongest things anyone can possess.

              • Cole Stanchfield

                What line in the Bible covers this?

              • Dress2Emperess

                Agreed! That’s the whole damn point here! Her ‘garb’ doesn’t comply with the ‘virtuous’ ceremony she is requesting! It’s completely hypercritical of the couple!

                • badgerchild

                  Your problem is that your idea of virtue is dependent on a certain percentage of skin being covered. If you think even a stark naked woman can’t be virtuous, you need some time alone with a dictionary and a moral compass.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  No, badgerchild, MY idea is NOT based on a certain percentage of skin being covered, but the minister’s obviously is. I’ve stated very clearly in earlier posts that the woman is NOT guilty of anything other than perhaps poor taste and being clueless.

                • badgerchild

                  The part of the point you are missing is that the pastor acted out of proportion to the bride’s poor taste decision. He was wrong to act that way. Almost all your responses are designed to excuse the pastor for acting abusively. You think that just because this event took place in a church, that the pastor is entitled to act as he did, and I think that even though the event took place in a church, the pastor was not entitled to act as he did, because people are not supposed to act that way when they hold themselves out to be teachers of love, forgiveness, and toleration. Perhaps Holiness churches are particularly strict and intolerant. That is itself bad and I’m surprised at you for defending them since you were able to escape that toxicity and presumably know better than to act that way yourself.

            • Cole Stanchfield

              If a woman should sleep with a man out of wedlock, she shall be taken to the center of town and stoned until dead.

          • J.p. Ladue

            Yeah right beside the commandment that says… “Do as we say, not as we do.”

          • Dress2Emperess

            Yes, there are all types of misogynist verses against the virtue of women in the Bible. One of the many reasons I’m a secularist.

          • Aia

            Who cares what the bible says when it promotes atrocities like slavery and rape?

          • Leigha7

            The only thing the bible has to say about women’s clothing, unless I’m forgetting something, is that they aren’t supposed to dress like men. By that standard, this is far more acceptable than pants.

      • decathelite

        This was a business transaction. They paid the pastor money, and he took it, without disclosing his terms of agreement.

        If a software company says, “If you buy our software, you can use it to post pictures on the internet,” and then somehow recognizes you’re going to use it to post slutty pictures of yourself, they are the ones that screwed up.

        • Vermo

          Nowhere the article says that they paid the pastor. I married in church and the priest never asked for money. If you consider a religious wedding as a business transaction, you should actually not be marrying in church in the first place. That’s not the spirit at all.

          • freemage

            That’s far, far from the typical standard, then, Vermo. Typically, you pay rental for the building, and pay the pastor for the service. I’m not saying you’re lying, mind you, merely that your experience is far from the norm.

          • hendeeze

            Well in the same vein, there are pastors that won’t perform baptisms unless they are paid…

          • Jessica Seifert

            You generally “make donations” to the church and the pastor is given a stipend for their services.

          • fiona64

            So, you didn’t bother to pay the officiant of your wedding?

            Nice.

          • smrnda

            Then I need to declare myself a ‘pastor’ and declare my business a ‘ministry’ so I can back out of any deal I don’t like and take people’s money and then refuse to deliver.

          • Cole Stanchfield

            Your wife/husband paid him, or you are not married. Officiators do NOT go through the trouble free of cost (unless they’re some close personal friend). And if it’s not a business transaction, why have a legal moderator at all? Why not just have some Joe-Shmoe do it if it’s just about the “spirit” of it. Oh, because it won’t be legally recognized. There is a reason they have to go through a legal process to become a civil officer… It was a wedding ceremony, NOT a commitment ceremony which apparently might be what you have if you didn’t pay for an officiator (they WILL sometimes do commitment ceremonies free as they don’t have any legal paperwork involved in them).

            • Dress2Emperess

              Cole, while the process of “being married” requires a license, the ceremony is completely arbitrary. It is not the ceremony which legalizes the marriage, it is the license. And one does not have to pay the officiator unless the officiator requires it. It doesn’t affect the legality in any manner. A wedding is simply a ritual. I’m not a minister or a lawyer, just a former Clerk of the Court.

              • Cole Stanchfield

                Yes, and a marriage officiant is who makes a marriage license legal (witness, confirm consent, etc…). They don’t have to be a pastor or whatever, they very often issue it at your city’s courthouse. Some, however, also perform the ceremonies. Not all pastors are paid, but 99,999 of 100,000 officiators are. No one said the ceremony is what makes the marriage legal??? I’m not a minister or a lawyer, just an experienced internet user and minor veteran of the marriage process.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Perhaps I misunderstood the point you were trying to make in your preceding comment, Cole. My apologies.

          • Jeanna Martin

            I was also married in a church and they charged us for the use of the building and the pastor’s officiant fee. We paid him in advance and all three of us signed an agreement. There were even cancellation clauses in the agreement for both parties, but nothing about the Pastor backing out at the last minute because of something he didn’t like. Must be a denominational thing?

          • Dress2Emperess

            Thank you! Even as a secularist, I make it my business to understand others beliefs. If this couple failed to understand the church they were about to get married in, that is on them! This is a ritual, not a business arrangement. The burden of understanding is on the couple!

            • badgerchild

              Oh, come now. If I invite you for dinner, and I unknowingly serve something that contains a common ingredient to which you are allergic, is it just an unfortunate fact of life that you deserve to die of anaphylactic shock because you failed to properly analyze the food you were eating?

              I find it suspicious and disturbing that you are posting so much to excuse the religious prejudices of a petty, abusive pastor of a church to which you say you no longer belong.

              • Dress2Emperess

                I cannot control your mind thought, badgerchild, but I am not defending religion. I am defending civic rights. We create subsets in life. When one volunteers to be part of a subset, it is within the parameters of that subset. If you want to join The Pink Lady society, don’t show up in a green hat and expect to be embraced. I don’t care that this is religion, perhaps that is the issue for everyone else. This is the case of one individual entering into a certain type of arena and expecting to operate outside the parameters of that arena. It is insignificant to me that it is religion.

                As an individual who actually suffers from food allergies, I take it upon myself to ASK when I am in a restaurant IF the food I am ordering contains a certain ingredient, or was prepared a certain way, because I don’t consider it the responsibility of everyone I meet to know what particular item I am allergic to. If I order “Pork medallions prepared in a peanut sauce” however, I don’t act outraged or offended or demand to have my money back on the dinner because it had peanuts in it.

                And just for the record, I NEVER ‘belonged’ to ANY religious organization, I was merely held hostage until I was old enough to escape my torturers. So I cannot make it clear enough my absolute contempt for religion and its perpetrators.

                I have never stated that I felt this situation was a fair and just one. But it is what it is under the circumstances.

                • badgerchild

                  Let’s stick to the issue. You are defending the pastor’s inexcusable, abusive, religiously-motivated behavior. Why?

                • Dress2Emperess

                  NO, I am defending his right to do so in his own arena.

                • badgerchild

                  You’re defending his right to be religiously abusive, OK. I get it. So does everyone else.

              • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                Considering the fact that the ingredient is common, and you’ve no way to know about the allergy unless D2E tells you about it, you’d have zero responsibility in the matter. It’s hir job to be responsible for hir own allergies and to inquire as to what’s in the food. I’d suggest, if one’s allergies are anywhere near the level of “lethal”, one should bring one’s own food.

                • badgerchild

                  I agree that this shows there was a lack of communication between the pastor and the woman. If I had given the menu to my dinner guests beforehand, someone might have been able to say, “Oh, I can’t eat fish”, for example, and we could have worked together to find something mutually acceptable. In the same way, if the pastor had been specific and clear about his expectations for dress, the woman would have been in the wrong to wear the unacceptable dress anyway. Then the pastor would have been entitled to say, “Sorry, but we agreed that that sort of dress is not acceptable, and we must reschedule.” Just “being a church” is not a way of clearly communicating specific expectations of dress.

      • ktappe

        “follow the rules”? You mean the “rules” they were not informed of until 30 minutes before the ceremony?

        • Vermo

          The rules they should have known if they were really catholic. Like that a woman can’t enter a church with naked shoulders.

          • freemage

            It wasn’t a Catholic church, for one thing–meaning that they aren’t Catholics, either (since Catholics wouldn’t NOT get married in a Catholic church).

            They may be Christians of any number of denominations. They may have chosen this particular church in deference to a parent or grandparent.

            If the pastor had some pre-req for performing the ceremony, he should’ve made that clear when he agreed to do it.

            • Dress2Emperess

              It says very clearly, for those who bothered to read, Truth Ministries Holiness Church. Holiness Churches are generally extremely strict. I grew up in one of their hell-holes.

              • badgerchild

                Allow me to express my sympathy. Evidently the experience has impaired your ability to tell the difference between outward appearances and inward virtue. Feel free to grow up.

                • Guest

                  Fuck you.

                • badgerchild

                  Have a blessed day.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Again with the juvenile name calling, and shove your insincere sympathy up your ass. I am so far past the atrocities I endured growing up, so far, in fact, that I don’t have to be a complete anarchist when it comes to discussing religion. Sounds more like YOU have some unresolved issues, dear badgerchild.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  SHUT UP!

                • badgerchild

                  Hit a nerve, did I? I hope you overcome your lingering issues far enough not to defend the actions of your abusers toward other abused people.

              • freemage

                That’s… irrelevant. The couple were not members of his sect. Therefore, yes, it IS incumbent upon him, if he’s planning on doing anything more than officiating the wedding, to inform them of any and all restrictions and requirements ahead of time.

                My wife and I married in an Episcopal church. In order to do this, we had to go through pre-marriage meetings with the priest, discuss with him our views on children, infidelity and any number of points. And he was upfront about the religious elements of the service, which were acceptable to us both.

                This pastor failed to do that, miserably, and thus ended up in breach of contract. Even without compensation being paid to him, the couple deserved to be treated in good faith–ie, not causing unnecessary and wasted expenditures for themselves or their guests.

          • Carolina

            Back when I was catholic, I used to go to church in tank tops. Nobody ever said anything.

          • Emily Fleming

            Really? That’s going to come as news to my Catholic friends who got married, in churches, with a priest officiating, while wearing strapless wedding dresses.
            (Also news to me. I attended those weddings with visible shoulders.)

            • Vermo

              I think they tend to tolerate more during weddings. But if you want to visit notre dame in Paris for example, you have to cover your shoulders (they borrow you some kind of scarf at the entrance) But seriously, that dress here, even in other circumstances it would be slutty…

              • Emily Fleming

                Weddings in general are pretty slutty in tone, though. They’re pretty much an announcement that the couple is going to have sex tonight, and from now on. ;) (Tongue mostly in cheek, there.)

              • badgerchild

                And I was required to wear a black robe and headscarf to visit the famous mosque in Abu Dhabi (actually issued one on site), despite the fact that I was already modestly dressed in a black long-sleeved, high-necked, unadorned tunic and long loose black trousers. It was a 120-degree sunny day and the mosque, open to the air, had no air conditioning. A funny little old lady kept clucking in disapproval at my headscarf coming untucked, and reaching up to fix it for me.

                I suppose I should have known better than to report to the mosque as a tourist in my slutty, inappropriate, unacceptable, sexy tunic, trousers, and uncovered head.

                On the other hand, maybe religious dress codes are just superstitious, sexist ignorance and a way to keep people properly subjugated. Just maybe.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  Why were you visiting it if you had such contempt for its rules? Mosques are NOT just buildings, they are the containers of the believers of a certain belief system. It is insulting to treat them as ‘tourist attractions’.

                • phantomreader42

                  If you feel it is insulting to treat your cult’s buildings as tourist attractions, then perhaps you should not be opening them to tourists.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  I actually agree with that, phatomreader42. That’s one of the many hypocrisies contained in religion. I’m just surprised that badgerchild would deign to enter such a building, having expressed such vomitous hatred for religion. I would think that would be the last place she would want to visit. I will point out, however, that despite her personal beliefs, she DID put on the scarf, just as this bride should have covered her breasts if she expected to continue her ceremony in the Holiness church. So thank you, badgerchild, for making my point for me.

                • badgerchild

                  I didn’t make your point for you, but nice try. Too bad you don’t have the intellectual gravitas to make your excuses stick.

                  If the pastor had stood ready with an alternate, acceptable wedding dress that was an acceptable compromise to the bride, and if after that compromise was implemented the pastor respectfully and decently performed the wedding ceremony as planned, then it would be like my experience. Instead the pastor acted like a petulant, vindictive, abusive bigot in order to punish the bride by causing her the maximum possible trouble and pain.

                  I went to see the mosque as a bit of cultural tourism because it was beautiful. I wasn’t getting married by the imam, dimwit.

                • badgerchild

                  They treat it as a tourist attraction, numbskull.

                • Dress2Emperess

                  It is sad that you must resort to juvenile name-calling. I don’t proclaim to be 100% informed on 100% of everything there is to know. There is no need to belittle anyone. I still am curious as to why you would visit a mosque, however, if you have such contempt for them.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Gee, maybe xe appreciates architecture? Maybe because the buildings are a damn impressive sight? Any number of reasons, really, and not a one of them requires a person to “respect” the religion of the worshippers.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  Why would I go see Notre Dame Cathedral if I ever got lucky enough to go to France? Because it’s a beautiful building. Many mosques fall into the “beautiful building” category too.

                • badgerchild

                  I’m devastated that you’re sad. I was under the impression that you thought people’s feelings were less important than rules of decent conduct. And I visited the mosque because, once again, it was a tourist attraction. I was treated with respect and supplied with the appropriate garb, and I enjoyed my visit despite the heat. If the pastor had treated the woman with respect and provided her with more appropriate garb, maybe this travesty would not have happened (if it did happen). Please do pay attention.

              • fiona64

                But if you want to visit notre dame in Paris for example, you have to cover your shoulders (they borrow you some kind of scarf at the entrance)

                Fascinating … because when I was at Notre Dame de Paris earlier this year, there was no scarf-lending concession at the entrance — or anywhere else in the building. (BTW … people *lend* things to those who need to *borrow* them. The church, in your example, does not “borrow you” anything … they loan it to you.) Nor was there any requirement that you wear a hat — another old-school Catholic “tradition.”

              • noncatholic

                they tolerate more because they’re getting payed more.

              • Cole Stanchfield

                “tolerate”? Is it truly that hard for you to exist in the same room with something you don’t agree with? Because I can guarantee you whenever you’re not alone, someone there doesn’t 100% agree with everything you do. Should you not be allowed in your Walmart because someone doesn’t approve your need to purchase Pabst Blue Ribbon? Should you not be allowed in your church because of the ethnicity of your spouse? Who gets to decide what is right and wrong and whether it should be tolerated and why do they have dominion over all. It is blasphemic to say you know what is right or wrong. You are NOT god. You are NOT omnipotent. You do not command the will of men and women. Only he can judge, not you.

          • RobertoTheChi

            Really? I’ve been to many weddings in the catholic church and not one bride had a dress that covered their shoulders.

          • MD

            Wow, then what on earth is going on in Latin America, where most women below the age of 60 wear slutty slutty dresses that leave their shoulders bare. Not only I, the bride, have naked shoulders at the wedding, but so did my sisters and girlfriends and cousins…

            Th shame, the shame.

          • Cole Stanchfield

            That is NOT a rule. Or at least not a universal one. You should not limit the access to the religious foundries to only those whom dress according to your wishes. And I would also wager that the majority of “Catholic Weddings” are not for a strictly Catholic couple. Especially seeing as there is not a single truly Catholic person on the planet. It is literally impossible with Catholicism’s conflicting doctrine.

          • phantomreader42

            You are aware that there are churches OTHER than catholic ones, aren’t you? Quite a lot of them, in fact. And you realize the case being discussed involves a wedding, don’t you? Or are you really THAT devoid of awareness?
            And what does it say about the catholic cult that they feel the need to have explicit rules about how much shoulder women are allowed to show, but can’t seem to see anything wrong with raping children and lying about it for decades?

      • SILENTSAM69

        That or just leave churches out of marriage. They are causing too many problems related to marriage, so people should take their business elsewhere.

        • Brian Lee Bohnet

          Leave churches out of marriages? You mean, the institution that BROUGHT marriage? LOL.

          • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

            Mmm, nope. Marriage as an institution predates Christianity by quite a lot, and non-Christian modern cultures have marriage as well. I don’t see any way to argue that Christianity has anything inherent to do with marriage as an institution, really.

          • SILENTSAM69

            Do you really believe no one was getting married except those who followed Abrahamic religions? Hinduism was around before either religion and it had its own marraige customs.
            People where getting married long before any of our current religions even existed.
            Just because someone has a Christian wedding doesn’t mean Christians invented weddings. These days it is a legal matter more than a religious one.

            • Brian Lee Bohnet

              “These days,” because you babylonians took the sanctity out of it.

              It wasn’t “more of a legal matter” when Christians brought it over here from Europe.

              And various unions occured elsewhere, marriage is a specific kind of union; with God.

              • MD

                Holy buttocks! I’ve been in a polygamous marriage all these years? Gotta tell you, that God fella makes a lousy husband. Doesn’t pitch in with the kids, doesn’t cook or even change a lightbulb. He’s never around, really.

              • SILENTSAM69

                Christians were far from the first to invoke a god in a marriage ritual. It has been done by many other religions. Just invoking your god does not make it special.

                Today bureaucracy and legal matters are a major part of our life. In the past much of this was handled by religious institutions. Today much of it is now a legal matter. This is no way affects its sanctity. It is still an important event in peoples lives, and the church is wrong in trying to decide who gets to have that important event.

                Thankfully there are alternatives to having it performed by a religious institution. The taint of a bigoted institution should not be involved in a happy day like that for those not part of that religion.

              • DavidMHart

                If you can demonstrate that your god exists, and also demonstrate that none of the myriad other gods in whose names people have been and are getting married, then you’ll have a point. Until then, the only reasonable thing is to treat all marriages as social an contractual arrangements between the people getting married and the society they live in, whatever gods, if any, that society supports. Thus if it is true that Christian marraiges are a union with the Christian god, it is equally true that Muslim marriages are a union with Allah, Hindu marriages are a union with Vishnu etc… the point being, yours aren’t special.

              • Carmelita Spats

                No, idiot, you can’t marry God. I’ve been trolling God’s page and His status never changes. It says, “I’m currently in a TRINITY.” Idiot theist.

          • phantomreader42

            Your sick death cult did not invent marriage, and does not own it. This has been explained repeatedly. The fact that you’re too stupid to understand the explanations does not magically make them go away.

      • Amalasan

        Whoosh.

        “Sex is for marriage”

        No, not even then.

      • twlv27

        how about i do what ever the fuck i want instead

        • Vermo

          Yeah, like does the pastor in his church

      • Denis F

        You might want to read the article, and then read up on contemporary news – I think that you missed the point.

      • J.p. Ladue

        What rules exactly? Where does it say that a woman cannot wear a sexy dress on her wedding day? the woman is entering a monogamous relationship. How is she a slut?

      • Samantha Thompson

        I would hated to see what that bigot would see at the one I picked.

      • GodsFavAtheist

        OMFG THANK YOU FOR SAYING THIS.
        Nothing pisses me off more than gay and lesbian men and women want to fight tooth and nail to get married in a church (off topic, I know but it’s some what related). Fuck the church and it’s condescending ways.

        Edit: Even with all the rage related to this article we all know that all churches and pastors are not alike. So apologies to the good churches.

      • mbarth

        Vermo and everyone else who uses the term slutty— have you looked up the definition (slang) or at the term “slut”??? She’s getting married to her husband. If she wants to do it naked, it’s not slutty. I’m sick and tired of men (and women) throwing that term around, yet can you tell me, what’s the match for a male counterpart??? Think a little harder about what you say. If you believe it’s the wrong venue since it’s a church, then that is one argument. But why throw in the slut word? Dress doesn’t equate to sex. Let’s keep this a bit more thoughtful.

      • stop2wonder

        His church his rules. I don’t agree with the rules but I agree with his right to make, and enforce them.

        The couple should’ve known the dress was pretty revealing and should’ve had it approved first before choosing it, or find another church and/or minister.

        • badgerchild

          If the rules were so important to the minister that he was prepared to act as he did, surely they were important enough to him to clearly communicate them to the bride and groom well before the event. Honestly, I wonder if you people believe in teaching kids what’s right and wrong, or if you just believe in spanking them when they violate rules you never told them about.

          • stop2wonder

            What do you mean “you people”? I think the whole thing sucks and there is fault on both sides, but at least I respect someone else’s rules in their own house, regardless of how asinine they are.

            The couple should’ve known that many churches, probably most churches would find that attire inappropriate for a wedding, so they should’ve asked to make sure. This is common sense so your analogy of spanking untaught children is a faulty one.

            The pastor was an asshole for doing this, but it was his right to be an asshole.

            • badgerchild

              “It was his right to be an asshole”, you say. I rest my case.

      • wolf

        i totally agree with you vermo. kudos to the minister.

      • Susan

        Or maybe don’t slut shame women and come across as a rapist by implying that her “immodest” dress will somehow cause the men in attendance to become ravenous sex fiends that cannot be held accountable for their actions.

      • bckm

        “slutty”? Isn’t that just a TEENSY WEENSY BIT judgmental? Like “the church” is not the site of the Ultimate Slut Competition?

    • Alan Dillman

      I’d vote for you as premier of British Columbia, based on that clever response!

    • The502

      Best. Answer. Ever.

    • nini

      <3 love your comment

    • Marisa Martin

      Christian pastors aren’t killing, raping or imprisoning women over it. Stupid, irrelevant response.

      • badgerchild

        The pastor’s behavior isn’t irrelevant or acceptable just because he didn’t actually have the woman taken out and publicly shamed.

        Oh, wait.

  • http://www.holytape.etsy.com Holytape

    If the nature of the wedding dress was going to be a potential problem, then the pastor should have mentioned it long before two hours before the wedding. If he had done that, it would have given her time either to find a different minister, or different dress. It was completely unprofessional of him. He caused financial and emotional damage to the couple, that could have easily been avoided. He has the right to not perform the ceremony, but he also had the responsibility to inform the wedding couple in a reasonable time frame.

    It is also arrogance on his part, because he made the ceremony about his taste and not the wedding couples’.

    Was the dress in poor taste, no. Her wedding, her choice. If she wanted to dress up like a giant turkey, and her groom like a pilgrim, the more power too her.

    • Hat Stealer

      The pastor totally held off telling them until it was too late on purpose. If he hadn’t, he would simply have been informing them about how he operated his business. By holding off until the last second, he could instead show everybody what a good Christian he was, while at the same time slut-shaming the bride and ruining some harlot’s day. You know, like Jesus would have wanted.

  • TnkAgn

    Does anyone besides me wonder what the real bride looked like in this dress? The bride herself said that there had been, “small alterations made to the dress to fit more desirably to my vision.”

    • Amor DeCosmos

      I think that this is an important part of the story that is missing as well…

      • GCT

        I fail to see the relevance.

        • TnkAgn

          Of course you do.

          • GCT

            Meaning what? Oh, I get it. If she doesn’t look like the model then she deserves to be slut-shamed because she’s not sufficiently good looking enough for you? Fuck that. How she looks in the dress she selected is not for you or anyone else to judge or criticize her for.

            • NickDB

              You don’t get anything! People are fully allowed to criticize anything they want. If the pastor had expressed his displeasure with the dress and still done the ceremony we wouldn’t be talking about this.

              We are allowed to say the dress is inappropriate and not suitable for the situation. I’d be saying the same thing about a bloke who wore a speedo to a ball. What we are not allowed to do is stop her from wearing what she wants on her wedding day.

              Essentially what you’re doing is aggressively going after anyone that has an opinion different to yours.

              • GCT

                You don’t get anything!,People are fully allowed to criticize anything they want.

                Where did I say differently?

                Essentially what you’re doing is aggressively going after anyone that has an opinion different to yours.

                No. I’m going after anyone that decides that they want to express misogyny and pointing out that it’s misogynistic.

                We are allowed to say the dress is inappropriate and not suitable for the situation.

                You don’t get a say in her and her fiancé’s wedding. You can act like a cad all you want, but just because you have
                the right to be one doesn’t mean you should act like one. It also doesn’t mean that I don’t have the right to call you out on it. No, your freeze peach doesn’t mean that you get to act like an ass and not be criticized.

            • TnkAgn

              1. No one looks like that model,
              2. Don’t confuse “slut-shaming” with the bride’s physical looks vis-a-vis her choice of dress, and
              3. We all judge, as you just did.

              • GCT

                I still fail to see the relevance.

                1. No one looks like that model,

                And, your point?

                2. Don’t confuse “slut-shaming” with the bride’s physical looks vis-a-vis her choice of dress

                I didn’t. You seem to think how she looks is relevant to the discussion; that it might present a mitigating factor that makes the pastor’s slut-shaming palatable. It is not a relevant factor. I don’t care how ugly you think she might be in that dress, it does not excuse the actions of the pastor.

                3. We all judge, as you just did.

                Yes, I’m judging you by your arguments and your words, not by your looks. Big difference.

                • TnkAgn

                  And your words make you sound like your own version of that pastor’s purity police. Enough.

                • GCT

                  Oh, how clever. Yes, calling out intolerance is what is really intolerant. Go tone troll somewhere else.

                • TnkAgn

                  I am a regular here and my bona fides are in order. Mayhaps you be trolling?

                • GCT

                  Just because you are a regular does not mean you aren’t tone trolling. It also doesn’t mean you aren’t being an asshat.

        • Amor DeCosmos

          It’s relevant because if she was a size 10, squeezing into a size 1, and she altered the dress so the hem was shorter and the bustline more revealing, and she was wearing red tassles on her nipples and crotchless panties, and she thought this was truly an appropriate outfit to wear to a church… then I might have deeper understanding of what really happened.

          Anyone can wear whatever they like in their own home, they can wear almost whatever they like in public, but I don’t think I’d be surprised to be kicked out of church for wearing my plastic bondage gear, or exposing my Prince Albert, or whatever…

          So yes… seeing an actual picture of the bride in her wedding dress would definitely give us deeper understanding of the situation rather than just seeing a model of the dress.

          • badgerchild

            Something tells me that if the bride was gluing cock rings to her bodice for a corsage, or (heaven forbid) exposing her Prince Albert in the church, parsimony would argue that we’d hear about the pastor objecting to that, even before the cut of the dress, eh?

          • GCT

            It’s still not relevant. You’re excusing the actions of the pastor by claiming that her appearance might not be up to your standards. I’m disappointed, especially given what seems like a very good point you made previously in comparing this to Muslims and burkas. Now, I’m wondering if I misinterpreted that.

          • Dress2Emperess

            Finally, another sane person!

  • http://www.secularview.com/ Dirty_Nerdy

    Wait, what? Seriously? We’re told since the day we’re fucking born to suppress our sexuality until our wedding day, then we’re not allowed to be sexual on our wedding day either?! Fuck this dude.

    • Stev84

      Only after the wedding. Alone in the bedroom. With the lights out.

      • GubbaBumpkin

        Hell, leave the lights on. What do we care?

        • RobMcCune

          That way only god can see what’s going on, he likes watching when it’s awkward.

        • Stev84

          Jesus watches everything you do and will burn you for eternity if you don’t have sex the way he wants.

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        And only sidehugs during anal.

        • Hat Stealer

          Okay, now I think you may be derivating from where we’re going with this.

          • C.L. Honeycutt

            “Now”?

      • Fleet_and_Truck_Pro

        In the missionary position for the sole purpose of procreation.

        Then sob with shame.

  • http://atheistlutheran.blogspot.com/ MargueriteF

    A lot of churches require wedding dresses that cover the shoulder or are a certain length or whatever. The couple should be informed of this in advance, though. I do think if I were going to wear a really sexy dress like this one, I’d have run it past the preacher to begin with, just to avoid any unpleasant surprises. You can expect most pastors to be on the conservative side.

  • MechaVelma

    can understand why a chruch might object to a bride looking like a hooker.

    • RobMcCune

      I can’t understand why you think every woman not wearing a burqa looks like a hooker.

  • katiehippie

    Someone should have shown him this dress to show it could have been worse.

    http://www.thegoddessblogs.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/105640-bad-wedding-dresses-2.jpg

    • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

      How very Medieval Italy! Barely covered breasts and heavy jewelry. Well done modern reinterpretation of it.

      Erm, sorry, yeah that pastor probably wouldn’t like that dress either. That was your point, probably.

      • katiehippie

        I’d be afraid to wear this one. One wrong turn and boobs everywhere!

        • badgerchild

          The problem isn’t the dress. It just plain doesn’t fit her, that’s all. The dress designer never intended for us to see the inside of the bodice as it folded double over her waist.

          • guest

            You don’t know that for a fact. Did you design that master piece? It fits perfectly. Now if we could just get her to do some jumping jacks.

            • badgerchild

              Where’s the “tongue in cheek” icon when you need it? :D

        • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

          Heh, if I was anywhere close to that, erm, well-endowed, I’d agree with you! But then again, that’s what double-sided tape is for :)

          As it is, my very small breasts don’t bounce out of much …

        • Fred

          “I’ve never seen so many grooms standing in the way of the bridesmaids when it came time to throw the bouquet.”

      • Kevin_Of_Bangor

        She is wearing a dress?

    • Tainda

      HOLY MAMMARIES BATMAN!

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      How the fuck?

      I mean, even with tape… how the fuck?

  • Oswald Carnes

    They should sue the worthless bastard for every penny they spent on the wedding.

    • sunburned

      Agreed. If you offer up services to the general public for profit you forgo the right to act indigent when the bride appears in a dress that you don’t like.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      Every penny plus some. Emotional damage, family suffering (chances are a number of people took time off and spent money to get there), loss of time…

  • Kaze

    Seems to me a pastor has the right to refuse service in his establishment, same as any other. If she wanted to dress like that for her wedding, her choice, but he has the right to say what is inappropriate in his church and under what conditions he performs a marriage. They should have discussed the issue sooner, sure, but honestly, who expects a wannabe Kardashian clubbing dress in a church wedding? It’s her wedding day, not a day to force someone to do something he doesn’t believe in. If he were an atheist, would they have had the right to force him to perform a religious ceremony? No. Freedom of religion goes both ways, people.

    • badgerchild

      The Christianity I was brought up with taught that you were acceptable in the sight of God even if you showed up at church in torn jeans and a dirty T-shirt. But you know better than God.

    • Matt D

      You think it makes sense to only care about yourself on someone elses wedding day? That it’s fine to waste all that planning, because the preacher gets a woody looking at the bride?

    • GCT

      That may not be the case if the pastor is performing a public service, and if they drew up any sort of contract.

      Regardless of whether he has the right to do it, he’s still a slut-shaming asshole for doing it.

      • Kaze

        “I have no actual argument, so I’ll just keep saying slut-shaming and asshole.”

        If he’s the one performing the ceremony, and he has a religious belief that disapproves of revealing attire, he has as much a right to refuse to perform it as anyone, whatever religion or non-religion. In fact he has the right to refuse to sanction the marriage for any reason that is not actually illegal. It’s called the 13th Amendment, folks. Can’t force someone to perform a job against their will. I agree that right before the ceremony is not cool, but that should have been addressed beforehand by both parties. Common sense if you’re having a church wedding.

        • badgerchild

          I know you wish that was the case, but it is not. There was a recent court case about a bakery and a lesbian wedding (surely you didn’t miss that?) that directly proves you wrong.

          • Kaze

            Actually, that doesn’t prove me wrong in the slightest. I specifically stated that he could discriminate for his religious beliefs for a “reason that is not actually illegal.” First of all, the “court case” you cite has not actually become a court case, much less had any decision rendered whatsoever, thereby not making it legal precedent or even determined by a government agency to have violated any laws. It’s a complaint being investigated as a possible violation. So please know what you’re talking about before you randomly cite “court cases.”

            • badgerchild

              Actually since I DO do research, I found that there was no such church and no such pastor. Nevertheless, without an agreement to the contrary, a business that accommodates the public (such as a church that agrees to perform weddings for nonmembers for compensation) has to perform the service for which they are contracted. Perhaps it’s not a “discrimination” case, but there are similar elements. A better subject for the story under discussion may simply be “breach of contract”, for which there is ample legal precedent (assuming you need legal precedent to force you to honor your contracts).

              • Kaze

                Did you actually find affirmative confirmation that the church and pastor do not exist, or just did not find confirmation of their legitimacy? Those are two very different things. Lawyers don’t get to tell the court, “I searched Google and couldn’t find this guy’s credentials, therefore he is a fraud.” Breach of contract may or may not exist in this case. There is nothing in this crappy blog that indicates whether a contract existed, whether it was in writing, whether there was bargained-for compensation, whether there were known conditions for performance, or whether the couple were aware of the religious beliefs of the pastor and/or the church. I agree it sucks that the wedding was canceled because details were not clarified sooner. But people jumping on the name-calling, legal analyzing (with no actual legal knowledge), and religion-hating bandwagon is just childish. Maybe the guy is a jerk, maybe he isn’t. Maybe the bride is a dumbass, maybe she isn’t. This is why blogs aren’t journalism, they’re just someone venting or entertaining.

                • badgerchild

                  I live in Houston. I have local phone books and access to local phone directories. I searched several online directories, including listings of Houston churches. I used Google Maps. I did not confine my search to the city of Houston, but to the area about a half hour radius of the city (including, for example, such inurbs and suburbs as Katy, The Woodlands, New Caney, LaPorte, Beaumont, Galena Park, Bellaire, and Stafford). I searched the archives of the Houston Chronicle. I found five churches that had the words “truth ministries” in that order, four of which were “Holiness” churches (apparently a denomination). I found no association of the pastor’s last name with the names of any of those churches. I found no person with the pastor’s name (as Michael or as Mike) in my search radius (though there are a couple in Austin and a couple out in the Texas countryside, possibly the same man with records in different places since the ages are the same). I think I did due diligence.

                  As far as there being a contract… are you just dense? Even a handshake contract is an enforceable contract in law.

        • GCT

          If he’s the one performing the ceremony, and he has a religious belief that disapproves of revealing attire, he has as much a right to refuse to perform it as anyone, whatever religion or non-religion.

          As I pointed out, that may not be the case, regardless of how much you keep saying it.

          “I have no actual argument, so I’ll just keep saying slut-shaming and asshole.”

          That’s cute. Apparently you have no problem with Muslim men forcing women to wear burkas? Attacking a woman’s choice of clothing as being too slutty/sexy/revealing is slut-shaming. She should have the right to wear what she wants without being told that she’s wrong for doing so. I’m sorry that you don’t understand how equality works, but simply claiming that there’s no argument to be made simply because we are pointing out the behavior being expressed is not going to cut it.

          • Kaze

            Again, name-calling instead of actual logical argument. Inflame is the name of the game. Comparing me to a terrorist is totally logical. The bride can wear whatever she wants in her wedding on private property. But the property owner has the right to say no you can’t have that wedding here, and the pastor has the right to say I will not perform this wedding in violation of my religious beliefs. Sorry that it butthurts you that the law is not on your side.

            • badgerchild

              The law is on the side of the member of the public who signed the contract with and paid the business serving the public (nonmembers), expecting that contract to be honored. If you consider that “butthurt” then remind me never to do business with you.

            • GCT

              Again, name-calling instead of actual logical argument.

              Point out where I called you any names.

              Comparing me to a terrorist is totally logical.

              Where in the world did I do that?

              But the property owner has the right to say no you can’t have that wedding here, and the pastor has the right to say I will not perform this wedding in violation of my religious beliefs. Sorry that it butthurts you that the law is not on your side.

              All I’ve said is that the law may or may not be on my side, depending on the terms of the agreement and depending on the service being offered. You don’t know what those terms are, so I don’t know how you can be so confident that you are correct. Secondly, claiming religious beliefs is not a panacea that allows you to do whatever you want. You do not have the right to force your religious beliefs on others, which is what you would be doing if you backed out of a contract based on your religious beliefs.

              Regardless, talking about butthurt is out of line. I’m saying that regardless of the law, the pastor is acting in a misogynistic fashion and should be called out on it. His actions fit the definition of slut shaming, and I’m going to call him out for it. If it bothers you that a fellow Xian is acting like an asshole, then I suggest you take it up with him, and not argue with us for pointing it out.

            • C.L. Honeycutt

              Very desperate attempts at dismissal there. Methinks the butthurtee doth project too much.

        • phantomreader42

          Does he also have a religious belief that prevents him from notifying people of his religious restrictions clearly, honestly, and in advance? If not, then why should people be penalized for not divining his arbitrary and secret restrictions by means of telepathy?

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Claiming that an argument doesn’t exist doesn’t magically make it true.

          No, weirdly, the law does not allow for him to just ignore contracts. His church took money, then he refused service in such a manner as to cause great harm to the couple and their families for a stated reason that involved no harm whatsoever to himself. Invoking the Thirteenth Amendment is just… Jesus that’s stupid.

          but that should have been addressed beforehand by both parties

          And since he did not address it beforehand either, you negate your argument.

    • Derrik Pates

      Then I guess it would have behooved that pastor to communicate his rules about what he expects the bride’s dress to be like more than 30 minutes in advance.

    • smrnda

      It’s her wedding day. That says enough. The pastor could put his attitude about modesty in check and figured that it’s about the people getting married, and not HIM.

  • Amakudari

    You know, if the pastor wants a dress code and that’s communicated to the bride and groom, that’s fine. If his expectations weren’t met, then that’s a communication issue, and he should do things differently next time. Until then, he ought to fulfill his obligations. Period.

    In my own wedding, I can think of several things people could have objected to. Whether those objections were right or wrong, the point is that every vendor gave us rules that they wanted respected, and it would have been devastating and unfair if they invoked a last-minute veto for violating delicate sensibilities they’d never made clear in the first place. If the pastor feels strongly about “modesty,” that prudishness has no business making its first appearance 30 minutes before the ceremony.

    That’s contractually speaking. If he weren’t a miserable asshole, he’d also feel bad disappointing everyone there and swallow his pride for 15 minutes.

  • decathelite

    “AmericaPreachers.com asked the bride and groom for pictures of the dress but instead was sent an email with a link of the exact dress worn by a professional model from the company’s website. The bride did mention, ‘there were small alterations made to the dress to fit more desirably to my vision.’ “I’m a unique person, I chose this dress because it’s different than the traditional wedding gown you see at every wedding” the bride said.”

    Why do I get the feeling that the dress didn’t make her look anything like it did on the stock model photo. I’m thinking peopleofwalmart.com. NTTAWWT

    • TnkAgn

      Had the same thought: “People of Walmart, Houston TX edition.”

    • Amor DeCosmos

      Because “small alterations” can mean different things to different people…

  • Gus

    One wonders how the couple who chose that dress also chose that church. The family seem not to have had much trouble with the dress either. We can only hope that this kind of disconnect between what they really believe and live and what their pastors believe will lead them to question their religion and really question all its tenets, not just to find a pastor who has less trouble with sexy wedding dresses.

  • busterggi

    So why is this good man of god checking out women, especially to-be-married women to see how hot they are?

  • guest

    Hopefully this resulted in the conversion of a few more Christians to atheists.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      Cleavage > Shaming fer sher.

  • Michael

    I’m an atheist but I agree with the pastor. If you want to be a part of a specific organization you have to adhere to their rules. I don’t agree with religious rules or beliefs so I don’t get married by said groups.

    • Matt D

      You speak of “their rules” as if they are clearly defined, yet we know better. The pastor didn’t like the dress, or the person in it, or a combination of the two, for whatever reason. It was his personal distaste that spurned him to reject the ceremony, not because the rules say “don’t dress like the Kardashians on your wedding day”.

      • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

        A lot of churches establish a dress code, and I’m not talking about the kind of churches that require women to wear floor-length skirts.

        • Matt D

          Of course they do, yet it’s still based on the personal preference of whomever is in charge (i.e. one church doesn’t like ruffles, another does), thus I don’t find it appropiate to cancel someones wedding because you dissaprove of their lack of modesty.

        • phantomreader42

          And if they can’t be bothered to notify anyone of the dress code in a reasonable time frame, then it’s not enforcable. They don’t get to just decide they won’t let you wear something on five minutes notice with no warning or documented policy. You can’t make up the rules as you go along and expect people to read your mind.

          • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

            I have been to churches that announced the dress code in the Sunday morning bulletin. Generally, they don’t want people wearing short shorts, or women showing cleavage or bare shoulders, or men showing bare chests.

  • smrnda

    I’ve attended a few highly “Christian” weddings, and they aren’t about the couple at all, it’s an overtly religious ceremony where the pastor, rather than facilitating a marriage, will turn it into an opportunity to make himself the center of attention. If a marriage happens at a church, it’s usually to promote the church’s teachings about marriage – it isn’t about YOU, it’s about the rules the church has for marriage and why they work.

    The notion of ‘consideration’ – some pastors expect members of their churches to not attend the weddings, funerals or other events of members of their own families if the extended family’s beliefs don’t line up with the church’s official stance. Expecting sensitivity and such is just asking more than you’re really going to get from people who put dogma above human decency.

  • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

    I’m not sure that this story is even real. As I’m Googling around, trying to find the church website or anything about it, all I come up with is this story, which has caught fire all over the web. I have found zero links about the church or the pastor, which is odd.

    Notice also that the original article doesn’t mention which city and state the church is in.

    There’s not even a picture of the bride attached to the story, it’s a picture of a model from whatever e-commerce site was selling the dress.

    Does anybody have a link showing that “Apostle Michael Canty” is a real person?

    • Amor DeCosmos

      I too have used my Google-fu and cannot find a single reference to Michael Canty, Truth Ministries Holy Church, or a picture of the actual dress.

      • https://twitter.com/atheist_in_nc Heisenberg

        One thing I do notice that all of the blog posts on this story have in common… They all use the same website article as their source.

        You would think that local news would have picked up the story, if it were true.

        I’m thinking that AmericaPreachers.com has pulled a fast one on the intertubes.

        • baal

          As to the why (assumption of largely fictionalized story)- ” Apparently, it was just as bad as lingerie. Can you imagine?! Yes, thank God for men who will stand up against the flow…even if it means losing his job (which most likely will be his fate).”
          - a comment from one of the reblogs of the story.

          It’s part of the on going victimization myth as well as normalizing both slut shaming and breaching contract in the name of the Lord.

      • badgerchild

        Yeah, me neither, and I am a particularly good Googler. Also, I LIVE in Houston, and I can’t find anything in the phone listings for a “Truth Ministries” Holiness Church. There is a “Love Truth Ministries” Holiness Church, and they are a storefront. However, “Michael Canty” is not listed as a pastor. Oh well, good leg pull.

        • badgerchild

          There does not seem to be any sign in Google of a Michael Canty who is a church pastor before August 11, when AmericaPreachers “broke” the story. An online white pages search does not turn up any Michael Canty in the Houston area, either.

    • Hat Stealer

      Hmmm, good catch. I can’t see anything that would verify this story, other than the website where the original article was written, which frankly looks dubious at best.

      I still am finding the reactions of “good” Christians defending the actions of the supposed pastor hilarious however.

  • JA

    Priest probably didn’t want to pop a boner.

  • Paula M Smolik

    So, she dresses like a slut on her wedding day, okay, so just hurry up and get them married so she can take it off. I’m sure the groom liked it and was motivated by it.

    • baal

      Well aren’t you precious?

  • Bitter Lizard

    I notice a lot of you are making the point that it isn’t clear what qualifies as “proper” attire for a wedding for true Christians. I just thought I’d take a moment to clear that up…

    • badgerchild

      “It is better to marry than to burn”, 1 Cor. 7. So, no black quilted fleece in midsummer, and it must be flame-retardant. The dress in question looks particularly cool and airy.

    • Tainda

      :{

      I…

  • Scott Morris

    Uhm, They are not having anything imposed upon them. They chose to get married in a church. Right? A sexy dress like that is disrespectful to the entire principle of a marriage ceremony in a church. They could have gotten a justice of the peace and married at the country club. Tough cookies. They had every freedom to do that. So curb your crap yall.

    • badgerchild

      Churches are disrespectful to the whole principle of humanity, Scott. Who cares if a church got its nose tweaked. Churches don’t automatically deserve respect. Pastors actively deserve opprobrium.

    • Derrik Pates

      And I’d be fine with that, if it wasn’t half an hour before the scheduled ceremony. The fact that either he didn’t ask, or didn’t follow through with any sort of due-diligence, if it was such a big damn deal to him, is a problem. Is it his church? Sure. Is it his decision? Yes. Was it a pretty crappy way of handling it? Sorry, but yes, it was.

    • Stev84

      The so-called “church” is really a former shoe store. Nothing respectful or respectable about that either. It’s about the same as any other random location.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      They’re having a very expensive contract broken and tremendous damage done to their and their families’ emotions, not to mention the loss of time to many, many people, so that the pastor can feel self-righteous. But hey, TOUGH COOKIES. How dare the day be about them. huh?

  • Scott Morris

    …and what about the pastors freedom to express his faith as he so chooses. The church is a place reserved for observing their faith and principles. They have every right to do so. It is not wrong in the least. Its what also protects our right as people and citizens not to practice a faith or religion if we so choose. Its called freedom.

    • http://confessionsfromthepeanutgallery.blogspot.com/ YankeeCynic

      I love the “…but, but FREEDOM” response. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should, and the fact that he has slut shaming as part of his religion means that said religion deserves scorn.

      In short, he’s free to do this, but in doing so he’s an awful human being.

      • Scott Morris

        BS. The bride and groom chose to submit to the beliefs and practices of that church, with the pastor as the leader. Period. They chose. They live by their choice. It’s not slut shaming (even if so, is the church supposed to glorify the “slut”? I would hope not) to abide by the principles, values and beliefs of your faith. She chose to be part of that organization, and with that comes the understanding that you accept their convention and values. The pastor did the right thing. It is his job to lead his flock by the values of their faith, and that is exactly what he did.

        • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

          Nope, contract law says otherwise. He’d already agreed to perform the wedding, and the couple had already paid him for it. Breach of contract, failure to perform.

          • Scott Morris

            Really? You might check on that one again. First of all, most churches do not take a fee for the ceremony. They accept a donation. If there is no consideration, a contract is very difficult to enforce. Finally, I doubt any judge in any civil court or common law application would ever find in favor of the bride. I am quite sure the pastor gladly returned their donation as well.

            Aside from that, in choosing that church and pastor, they are giving implied submission to that religious institution and the de facto authority of the pastor.

            Not a chance you have the legal aspects of this anywhere close to correct. I am quite sure any attorney would love to take the case, but certainly not on contingency.

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              Really? I signed a contract with the rabbi who did my wedding, and he definitely took a fee, not a “donation”. Oral contracts are still contracts, and even if they didn’t sign any documentation there is a clear expectation of money paid for services rendered, which is both an oral and implicit contract. I think wmdkitty is correct in her interpretation, but I am not a lawyer, so I can’t be certain.

              • Scott Morris

                You are both absolutely incorrect on both principle and legal grounds. I am not an attorney, but have had a entertaining discussion with two attorney, one of which has also been a judge. They both laughed at this and said “you gotta be joking” But one said he would be glad to take the case just because it would be fun and he would get paid either way.

                The contract is to perform the ceremony within the confines of the religious context and convention, as that is also what the bride and groom chose the church and pastor for, as that is what they do.

                Sorry, but you are way off on this one.

                Moreover, you wont find a judge in the country anywhere that will delve into requiring a religious institution to do anything that is contrary to their beliefs. So long as the money was returned, this church is fine. Any judge that does risks getting that quickly overturned on appeal, and judges really hate when that happens because it makes them look like fools.

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  Christianity has a dress code? Since when? Religious context and convention aren’t static and aren’t obvious without clear communication, which obviously did not happen. It is the pastor’s responsibility to state any objections to any type of clothing, not the couple’s responsibility to find out. Absent an explicit mention of a dress code, there isn’t one.

                  Since when is marrying someone wearing a tacky dress “contrary to their beliefs”? Seriously, that’s not part of any religious beliefs I’ve ever heard of.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  You’re an idiot. A contract was in place.

                  The contract was violated.

                  BREACH OF CONTRACT.

            • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

              You’re wrong. There was, in fact, an implied contract, and he failed to perform as required. He does NOT get to decide what the bride or groom (or anyone else in the wedding party) wears, and he does NOT get to weasel out of his duties on the grounds of “I don’t like that dress”.

  • DougI

    Does the pastor realize that after the wedding she’ll be taking it off for sex later? I suppose he’ll be disgusted that sex may happen that doesn’t involve a hole in the sheet.

  • TnkAgn

    To the couple in question, and to all who hanker to marry*, I suggest Park Chapel in Reno NV. A true “neon chapel” and one of the oldest wedding venues in Reno. My bride and I were wed there by a reverend of sorts, and the ceremony was replete with a fake bouquet at a very reasonable price, and $50 in house chips, good at the Sands Hotel and Casino. It worked for my bride and I back in 1978, and is still working today.

    *The Nevada Lege is working on a repeal of the 2002 NV Constitutional ban. It may take until 2016.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recognition_of_same-sex_unions_in_Nevada

  • FlightedChemist

    There’s no way in hell this would fly in my parent’s church either. The priest even frowns on strapless dresses, not only for the bride but the bridesmaids- one bridesmaid at a wedding I recently attended had a tattoo on her shoulder that he deemed inappropriate (wings? seriously.. a set of wings…) and he made her cover up with a shawl.

    I’m a little torn here- the bride should be able to wear what she wants on her wedding day, but, right or wrong, should anyone be surprised that the pastor wasn’t down with the dress? If you want a church wedding, there’s inherently less “personal preference” allowed than in a secular ceremony. Trust me, as an atheist couple “looking forward” to planning a Catholic wedding, there are a lot of parts of our day that aren’t going to be “ours”. It’s par for the course. I don’t even think I’m allowed to have a colored wedding dress, because that might indicate lack of purity (hahahahaha… I mean, of course I’m a virgin!) and white is also symbolic of the white baptismal and first communion garments.

    My advice to the bride would have been, buy the dress you love and wear something cheap and less controversial for the ceremony, changing into your real dress after. Should this have to be the case? No. But I’m all for minimizing conflict. This from the girl prepared to plan two weddings.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      My old church frowned on strapless dresses even for the groom and groomsmen. It’d have been nice to know that more than half an hour before the ceremony…

  • Doug

    Church has the right not to perform a ceremony for any reason regardless of what anyone can say, think or do. It doesn’t matter if you think the dress was appropriate or not. What matters is that Churches be allowed to practice in anyway they want.

    • badgerchild

      ANY way? ALL churches? Including the ones you don’t agree with? Including the ones that use the Bible (or other holy book or saying) to promote bigotry and hatred or to encourage fraud and abuse? Kindly unwrap and use that brain cell you’ve been saving for a special occasion.

    • Stev84

      In civilized countries businesses have the right to cancel a contract at certain points of the process. 30 minutes before they are supposed to fulfill their end of the deal is not it.

    • Phlobis McJordan

      I mean…it’s obviously a horrible story…but agree with Doug. The Church can (be really lame and mess up someone’s wedding day) refuse service. I don’t see a discrimination thing here (based on sex, religion, race, etc). Just a pastor ruining someone’s day. It sucks, but to be fair..if you’re going to wear a dress that is pretty sexy (it is, let’s be honest)…then maybe the whole getting married by a pastor thing wasn’t for them.

      “The Truth Ministries Holiness Church was established 14 months ago and currently renting a converted shoe store for worship services. Neither the bride or groom were members of the church.” – Um, Ok.

  • Robert J. Williamson

    I’m an atheist but I think this is fare enough. Even restaurants have a dress code so why shouldn’t they have one? She must be pretty stupid if she thought this was suitable for a church wedding. I think it is perfectly reasonable to set standards for your establishment.

    • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

      Those standards must be set before the contract is signed, though. Restaurants with dress codes don’t let you order, take your payment, and then kick you out. They tell you upfront that your attire is insufficient.

      If they accidentally seat someone whose attire doesn’t match the dress code? They don’t kick them out, because they now have an implicit contract to serve that person. If the pastor had a dress code, it is up to him to let the couple know beforehand. Once the contract is signed, done deal.

      • Robert J. Williamson

        I disagree. To use your own metaphor this is like a restaurant taking a reservation and then refusing to honour that reservation because the person is not dressed correctly. I was recently on an all inclusive holiday in Egypt and when I got there the restaurants had a jacket required policy. I did not expect this and hadn’t brought a jacket to a holiday in the desert. So I had paid for my food but could not eat it as I was not dressed correctly. So metaphor shot down.

        However getting back to the facts, everyone knows there is a standard of dress for a church wedding. This women must be a grade A moron if she thought this dress was acceptable for a church wedding. There is still such a thing as common sense and as it is his premises he has the legal right to refuse service.

        • phantomreader42

          No, actually there is NOT “a standard of dress for a church wedding”. There are tens of thousands of different churches with different conflicting standards. If this church couldn’t be bothered to communicate its standards clearly and honestly, how is that anyone’s fault but the idiots running the church?

          • Robert J. Williamson

            Yes and all those standards exclude dressing like a lap dancer. I’m an atheist, my parents were atheists, my entire family and everyone I know are atheists but even I know that you do not turn up to a church wedding dressed like a call girl. This dress isn’t just a little off for a church it is insanely off and she must be a bloody half wit to think it is acceptable. She should have known better and the guy running the place has a right to refuse service to her. Obviously you feel differently and think you can turn up for at your dental appointment wearing a strap on dildo and act all shocked if you were refused treatment. Fine go to your friends wedding dressed as Hitler for all I care and then argue with the pastor as I’m done with you.

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              I’ve been to weddings where people dressed in RenFaire garb, or one like a satyr and one like a fairy, or all sorts of things. What is appropriate is very much subjective to the ones in the wedding ceremony, and it is up to the pastor to say if he has any lines he will not cross. There is no universal standard of dress- I’ve worn jeans many a time to Friday night services, even jeans with giant holes in them, and that was totally fine.

            • cary_w

              “Yes and all those standards exclude dressing like a lap dancer. ”

              Ummm… No, actually they don’t. I’ve been to several that wouldn’t have a problem with this dress, and I haven’t ever spent much time in churches. “All” is a strong word, it only takes one exception to make that a false statement.

              • Robert J. Williamson

                Wow, I now see why religious people find atheists on these boards so annoying. I’ve seen the light!

                Why insist on being such a tool about this? Yes there probably is a church that lets people dress as a lap dancer. But this women exists in her community and should have some concept of how to behave and dress in a normal church. So instead of being an ass hat and trying to prove my statement “false” perhaps you should accept that there are norms in society.

                There are nightclubs that allow people so wear strap on dildos but unless you had checked this in advance you would expect most nightclubs to turn you away.

                It seems bizarre that there are some atheists so negative towards religion that they are arguing over and over that a person should be able to turn up in anything they like and expect a church to let them in. Yet they would not expect this from any other business in the world.

                Anyway I’ve said my piece. Go out and dress as a gimp and see who allows you in there place to eat or drink or dine and then take them to court and see what happens.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          everyone knows there is a standard of dress for a church wedding

          The fact that people buy and wear dresses exactly like hers to wear in mid-five figure weddings all the time shoots this down a bit.

    • Phlobis McJordan

      I thought about this too…but take the religion thing out of this completely. This could be just simple breach of contract (i signed a contract with my officiant and paid a deposit, etc). He could have asked prior to taking the job (if it was that important), and politely said “This service isn’t for me…here are recommendations for other officiants.” Bottom line, he was hired to perform a legal service, and walked out.

  • ufo42

    Wow! … and these self-righteous assholes call atheists arrogant? I hope the not so happy couple take the hint, tell that judgmental prick of a pastor to fuck himself and go have a civil (and civilized) wedding.

  • SeniorSkeptik

    She should have simply told the pastor the dress was a hint to her husband to be to hurry up and follow Gods instructions in Genesis 1:22 “And God blessed them, saying be fruitful, and multiply…”

  • ianrey

    I disagree. You want to get married in the church, you follow the rules of the church. You want to get married at Disney World, you follow the rules of Disney World. If the rules are arbitrary and restrictive, the couple should reconsider why they would want to belong to that church anyway.

    • phantomreader42

      And how, pray tell, is one supposed to follow the rules of the church if the church changes the rules without notice?

  • Dress2Emperess

    I’m a secularist, but I have just got to say that I feel this minister was well within the guidelines of his, and his churches, guidelines to refuse to marry this couple, based on his feelings the bride was being immodest. When one books a church, or any other facility, for an event, it is the presumption of that facility (rightly so) that the individuals have a clear understanding of the belief systems that exist in that arena. Just as one would not show up in hunting gear at a “Save the Wetlands” fundraiser, or serve pork at a Muslim facility, showing up in this type of dress, which clearly violates the Christian values of modesty (the real ones, not the ‘selective’ ones), is an affront to the very religion they are asking to sanction their ceremony. In my opinion, one cannot present themselves as a ‘believer’ or a ‘practitioner’ of a belief system, then show up dressed in a manner which blatantly violates its tenets.

    • cary_w

      He is well within his rights to refuse to marry them, or anyone else for that matter, but he is not within his rights to break an agreed to contract the day of the event. If he is going to refuse to marry people for arbitrary reasons like this he needs to make that clear while they are still in the planning stages, not an hour before the wedding. Yes, I know he probably didn’t see the dress until then, but he should have done the wedding and used this as a learning experience, and next time been a lot more careful about who he does weddings for and perhaps require them to have some counseling sessions or show him the dress ahead of time. It is never OK to expect people to read your mind and intuitively know exactly what is expected in every situation. If you expect a lot of Muslims to show up to an event, you should remind people not to bring pork. “Christian modesty” can mean anything from long sleeves and skirts to no cleavage. It is always best to just be specific.

      And by the way, last time I went to a “save the wetlands” fundraiser it was full of duck hunters, and a few of them were, in fact, wearing some hunting gear.

      • Dress2Emperess

        Must be a different organization from my experience, because we believe in preservation, not annihilation, of both the land and the animals. But way to stay on point.

  • Jen Kuhn

    Yeah, he has every right to ask for a certain level of modesty in his own church. It is ridiculous to compare this with being forced to wear a burkha. Talk about extremes. All he asked was that she dressed moderately.

    He did not slut shame her, he said the dress was inappropriate for church. He did not mention her virtues. If she wants to wear a club-hopping dress to her wedding, then pick someplace appropriate to have that wedding, such as a personal home, a park, a private ballroom or a dance club.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      He did a tremendous amount of damage to their finances and their emotions, knowing that they wouldn’t be able to fix the “issue”.

    • cary_w

      What if the level of modesty he asks for in his own church is wearing a burka? I don’t see how having a dress code is all that different from a required uniform. The problem isn’t that he wants everyone in his church to dress modestly, the problem is that he did not make it clear when he agreed to preform the wedding.

      • TychaBrahe

        If he decides that the dress code is flapper dresses for men and Star Trek TOS colored tops and pants for women, that’s his right. If you want to show up in his church you wear what he says.

        • cary_w

          Totally agree. I don’t see how these pastors rationalize not enforcing their rules in their own churches. I mean look at the statistics, something like 80% of Catholics use birth control at some time in their lives. Clearly these guys have completely failed at convincing their own flocks to “follow the word of God”.

          • badgerchild

            “Thou shalt not wear a cocktail dress to thy ceremony of marriage lest thou be shamed in the church before the eyes of God and man.” No, no, can’t find that one in my Bible.

  • John

    I hope the pastor dies. Like tomorrow. Not kidding. I hope he dies. Perhaps violently.

    • baal

      Death penalty for at most several 10′s of thousands of dollars of harm + some psychic distress? I don’t agree. It’s not even close.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      I hope you live a life long enough that you can learn how to less easily slip into violent revenge fantasies, and then a lot longer.

    • badgerchild

      I hope you learn to control your abusive mouth and your violent thoughts, preferably in that order, but the other order will also do. What part of “it is wrong to wish death on people” do you not understand? You are as bad as one of those crazy Old Testament prophets. Get out, I don’t want you in my freethinkers movement.

  • EricTboneJackson

    God, the Creator of the Universe — He who created a trillion billion stars, nebula that stretch for light years, more worlds that grains of sands in all the beaches; He who created life itself, who created man and woman, who invented sex, who invented beauty — hates it when an Earth female shows too much leg above the knee. Really?

    Curious how most people’s God is exactly as small and petty as they are.

  • getz

    “Wedding days are supposed to be a celebration of a couple, not an opportunity to be slut-shamed by a pastor.”

    Then perhaps they shouldn’t go out of their way to have the ceremony performed by members of organizations devoted to shaming sluts. That goes double if they were members of that organization and were oblivious to various problems with its message until their wedding day. Casual acceptance of these kind of messages + exceptions for people on their wedding day is not much of an improvement.

  • TnkAgn

    As to the crashed wedding in Houston:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lj60OAh7O5U

  • MisterTwo

    Did the minister ever think about whether it was scriptural to rent out a church meeting place? I don’t see anything in the Bible that permits such use. How closely does he really want to stick to scripture? The only fund-raising authorized in the New Testament is the weekly giving by the members. The story goes that Jesus got really mad when the temple was turned into a place of business!

    If he’s going to rent out the facility (and his services) to the general public in order to support the congregation, he’s already taken liberties with his own religion. He’s operating a place of business, not a church. And if he has rules they need to be in the contract. Many wedding dresses these days are “sexy” – perhaps not to the extent that this one was, but certainly backless and cut low in the front. He should have not only included the rules in the contract, but verbally communicated those rules, because he wasn’t dealing with a church member who might have been expected to know. Once they showed up for the wedding, it was too late for him to back out. It’s really that simple. It was a learning moment for him, a message that if he had certain standards, he would need to spell them out in advance. But that learning moment would be that NEXT TIME, he would have to spell it out. It was too late this time.

    • allein

      Exactly. Some people here are saying “you want to get married there, you have to follow their rules”…I agree, but then they should have made their rules explicit, and well before an hour prior to the ceremony. Leaving them in the lurch at the last minute was unprofessional and mean.

  • Mick

    How could the wedding guests be surprised by the preacher’s behaviour? They all know there’s no compromise possible. The preacher is the boss and the flock will obey.

    As a founding member of the cult once said, “If you are not with me you are against me.” (Matthew 12:30)

    • cary_w

      But it does seem like the preacher should be ashamed that he has so little control of his flock that one it’s members show up in to her wedding in this dress! His flock has clearly not been listening to him!

      • TychaBrahe

        Apparently she’s not a member of that church.

        • cary_w

          Which begs the question, why is he agreeing to marry someone who is not a member of his church without finding out something about them before hand? Next thing you know he’s going to be tricked into agreeing to preform a gay wedding! This guy really needs to learn to be more careful, and take a serious look at whether he is just greedy for more money or performing marriages for God.

  • Kellen Connor

    Why are all of today’s “sexy” clothes only for women who can go bra-less without killing themselves?

    Also, that pastor was being a dick.

  • asdf

    I have no problem with this. They wanted a church wedding, have to play by church rules. It’s like signing up for a sport then not getting to play because you didn’t meet dress code. They know what they got into. Secular marriage ceremony would have been better off

    • cary_w

      And what are the church rules? Did the pastor clearly state that there was a dress code when he agreed to marry the couple? If not, then he’s the one breaking the contract. Next time he is asked to preform a wedding he needs to be sure to inform the couple that he must approve all of the wedding clothes before he will agree to officiate the wedding.

      This is where his religious freedom comes in. He has every right to refuse to do gay weddings, mixed-race weddings, weddings for women who dress like prostitutes, or any wedding that he doesn’t feel should happen, but he needs to make that clear when he is first asked, not the day of the wedding!

  • Hamish

    I agree with the minister, and I’m a lifelong anti theist. If the dress was as pictured, it was great for a private party, maybe, or for a hooker, but a minister has every right to reject it being worn at a marriage ceremony in his church. The woman has the mind of a 13 year old.

    • TnkAgn

      It is Texas, after all. Unless it’s Houston Alaska, which would make this story even more adorable and understandable.

    • cary_w

      So just because you don’t like her dress, you think it’s ok that the pastor backed out the day of her wedding, when it’s too late to change the dress or wedding location, or cancel the reception, food, flowers and all that?

      Who made you king of the world, who gets to decide which dress is acceptable and which is not? Do I need to get your approval on my daughter’s wedding dress before she gets married next spring? I mean, if YOU don’t like it then it must be inappropriate!

      • Hamish

        I wouldn’t let the woman in my house dressed as she was. I have that right. I think the minister has the right to say how people entering his church need to dress. If she wants to flounce around like a whore, she can get married in Las Vegas, or on the sidewalk.

        • katiehippie

          So how do you know a whore when you see one?

        • http://confessionsfromthepeanutgallery.blogspot.com/ YankeeCynic

          I love how you seem to think you own the women in your house.

        • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

          No, no you don’t have that right, actually. Women are people, and people get to decide how they dress. Children you can control the clothes of, but your wife or adult daughters? They are adults who can pick their own clothes, and you have no say whatsoever that they don’t choose to give you (ie, they may allow you to play an advisory role). You won’t “let them”? You don’t have the say to stop them.

          • Daniel Schealler

            Sorry to get pedantic on you – I agree with the general thrust of your argument.

            However, Hamish specifically said that he wouldn’t let the woman in his house dressed like that.

            Hamish does have the right to refuse permission to enter his home. Doesn’t matter how good or bad his reasoning is, it’s his home.

            Refusing entry based on grounds of ‘because your dress is too sexy, you harlot’ makes Hamish kind of an ass, sure. But even an ass gets to say who is or is not allowed into their home.

            • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

              It depends if the wife is on the deed/lease or not, actually. If she is, it’s her home too and he cannot legally refuse her entry without a restraining order or other legal order that trumps her right to enter her own property.

              /even more pedantry

              • Daniel Schealler

                Sure – but in the context, Hamish was referring to a total stranger and his personal home, so no dice there either.

                /even more pedantry AGAIN

                ^_^

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  Lol. I did misread it originally and think he was talking about “his” women, instead of this particular woman. Yes, he can refuse her entry into his personal abode for any reason or none at all.

                  Unless, of course, she’d signed a contract with him and paid him money to get a tour of the house. Then, unless the dress code was spelled out ahead of time? He’s still obligated to let her in and look around.

                • Daniel Schealler

                  Okay, now you’re going too far, even for me. :P

                • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

                  Heh. Just trying to extend this little metaphor to cover the situation at hand (pastor refuses to open his “house” to the couple due to dress, even though he’d been paid beforehand to do just that). It’s pretty clumsy, I grant you that!

        • cary_w

          “I wouldn’t let the woman in my house dressed as she was. I have that right.”

          Yes, you do, totally agree with you.

          ” I think the minister has the right to say how people entering his church need to dress.”

          Yes, he does, he just needs to make this clear before the day of the wedding. he does not have the right to agree to do a wedding then back at the last minute because he doesn’t like the bride’s dress. breaking promises like this is unethical, un-christian and possibly illegal.

          “If she wants to flounce around like a whore, she can get married in Las Vegas, or on the sidewalk.”

          I have to say, I agree with you here too, but this is just an opinion, I can see how others might have a different opinion, and it still doesn’t excuse the minister from backing out of he agreement.

  • http://shadus.org/ Shadus

    Here I thought the whole point of religion was slut shaming and maintain patriarchal control. Who knew.

  • wilson

    Jesus. That’s a cocktail dress, sweetheart. You don’t wear shit like that in church, ya twit.

  • Oranje

    Add some legwarmers to that. “She’s a maniac… MAAAANIAC…”

    /sorry, for some reason the lighting and makeup made me think 80′s.

  • Julie

    If she wants to be immortalized in her wedding photos, looking like she’s coming from an after hours night club…

    • cary_w

      …then that’s her business, why is it any concern of yours or the pastors?

  • SILENTSAM69

    I hope they where able to get him to pay for all the money that was wasted because of the pastor.
    With all the trouble ministers and priests cause these days they should be removed from the whole wedding business. Marraige was not invented by any religious institution, and they shouldn’t get to make up stupid rules about it.

  • Shumaa

    I think that she can choose any dress she wants, BUT if she wants to get married in a CHURCH she should RESPECT the holy place. Otherwise she can get married even in the middle of the street! I love the dress, but unfortunately I think, that this one is not appropriate as a wedding dress.

    • katiehippie

      I’m surprised there are any capital letters LEFT! Christians are cornering the MARKET on them.

    • Stev84

      “Holy place”? It’s some chairs in a former shoe store. We aren’t talking about Notre Dame, St. Peters or a place that has even some remote historical, architectural or cultural value.

      Maybe she thought the dress was ok because of the silly location.

  • Joseph George

    The Charisma article about it could use some fun time trolling :)

  • Anonymous Person

    The first thing they will need to do is they will need to review the contract for services with the Church to see if restrictions on the style of dress are mentioned. If no restrictions on style of wedding dress are listed then Sue the church for the cost of everything and punitive damages as they at the very least broke the contract in doing so in clear violation of contract law in most states.

  • Emily Fleming

    In one of the linked articles, someone is quoted as saying ” Can you be a doctor and wear this dress at work? If the answer is NO then you cannot wear this to church as well.”

    I have seen very, very few wedding dresses which are practical for practicing medicine in.

    • fiona64

      I know, right? Mermaid hems/hobble skirts, cathedral trains, hoop skirts … hardly practical for clinic attire.

      • Emily Fleming

        And most wedding dresses are white, or at least very pale colours (ivory, etc.). Imagine the dry-cleaning bills!

        • fiona64

          “Doctor Jane, Patient Bob is hemorrhaging! Do you think your dry cleaner will be able to get the blood out of that Chantilly lace?”

          ::snicker::

  • Budhag Rizzo

    I hope the ending to the story was they managed to get another minister in time to perform the ceremony.

    • Stev84

      A minister, yes. A location, no. He refused to let someone else perform the ceremony. If you needed any more proof that he is a giant asshole, there it is.

  • RageMojo

    I find it funny most people can barely run their own lives, but they want to tell everyone else how they should live. Humanity has become a disgrace when a believer of a zombie prophet, born to a virgin from an invisible father figure who used to be really angry and now is no where to be found, is going to pass judgment on a dress length. jesus fucking christ.

  • Peter

    I expect it was their own choice to get married in the Truth Ministries Holiness Church, was it?

    • TnkAgn

      Good question. Was it indeed?

  • Gerry Mooney

    This sort of sounds like a family drama playing out and the minister got caught in the middle. So the couple weren’t religious, but were having a church wedding? Maybe pressured by the parents? Maybe the bride was making a statement about having a church wedding that she didn’t want.

    I’m sorry to say that when my wife watches shows like “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Bridezillas” I do see some of it. Weddings appear to prompt a lot of acting out.

    On the face of it the minister was wrong, but if you have a church wedding at least try to dress the part.

  • Gadfly

    Was the poor man afraid that the dress was too…stimulating?

  • Guest

    The more pastors act like this, the more Humanist celebrants will catch on. You can wear what you like at a humanist wedding. You can even be married nude!
    So let him kvetch about sexy wedding dressess. In a few years, he’ll be doing it in an empty church.

  • decathelite

    I like how in all the bickering going on with Christians who say that the bride is justified in wearing it because she’s getting married, and the Christians that say the pastor is justified because the bride was a slut, not one of them is going, “huh, why don’t we all ask God, together, and we’ll get an answer”

    The fact that nobody thinks to do that is all the proof needed to show that it’s all made up.

  • Paulo

    Next time hire a clown. There is no difference.

  • Lola Ladonna

    As an atheist I would honor the agreement with the pastor if I had chosen to wed in a church. The pastor may have been a jerk for declining on the basis of the dress, but that is club wear and not a wedding dress. I can’t imagine a pastor anywhere that would not be offended and taken aback if a bride appeared in a church in that dress. She showed very poor judgement. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. If you want to buck tradition that’s fine but you should cover all your bases and she clearly did not think this through as she’s just another young woman who thinks her perspective is the only insight that counts.

    • RageMojo

      I have news for you, when two people get married, it is ONLY their opinions that count. This isn’t even about something controversial. It was about a dress length, get over yourself and stop trying to tell others how to live, it is very ugly.

  • GreatFinn

    You are entitled to have what kind wedding you want, have a fully naked wedding if you so wish. But the church and pastor, or synagogue and rabbi, or whatever the religious figures and institutes involved are entitled not to participate in that kind of wedding. Common sense should have told her that is inappropriate dress for a church wedding or at least she would have to ask the pastor if that is too racy dress. If this was some wedding performed by a captain on a boat, she might have cause to whine, but now she can only blame her own lack of common sense and entitlement.

  • Steve

    I’m going to get married by a a volcanologist those guys can party.

  • J man

    I am shocked that anyone would have expected him to act otherwise. This dress is incredibly distasteful and is literally screaming for the attention of other men. A pastor is obligated to act in a way that promotes christian values and last time I looked modesty was rated pretty darn important to Christians. If you are going to make a vow to God and everyone wearing this dress I would have serious doubts that you were taking it seriously. And I’m an atheist.

    As a man I feel sorry for the punk bitch that wants to marry this trick ass hoe.

    • fiona64

      As a man I feel sorry for the punk bitch that wants to marry this trick ass hoe.

      As a woman, I feel sorry for any female within a 100-mile radius of a misogynist like yourself. What business is it of yours?

      • J man

        See your trippin to call me a misogynist. I live in a world where there are consequences to how you behave and respect is not granted automatically. A woman that cries fowl when she brought this and the attention it got on herself had it coming. what is it she has done that has merited respect? Why should I have sympathy for her and make the pastor look like an asshole when she is the one who’s lack of judgement is to blame?

        • katiehippie

          And the consequences of your nasty statements earn you the title of misogynist.

          • J man

            These people both earn disrespect yo. Call it whatever you like but she is a fool and so is her husband. maybe my lingo may not be all PC and what not but that is irrelevant. The fact of the matter is she should have known better. We don’t live in a world free of consequences. No one gets free licence to do whatever they want without consequences.

        • fiona64

          A woman that cries fowl when she brought this and the attention it got on herself had it coming.

          I’ve never met a woman who “cries fowl.” Do your female friends impersonate ducks, geese and chickens with some degree of regularity?

          I rather imagine, from your eloquent assertions here, that your first question about sexual assault victims is “What was she wearing.”

          Your reply merely affirms my assessment of your misogyny.

          • J man

            Yo where did sexual assault come into the picture? Did anything remotely resembling that ever come into da piture?
            No!
            The last time I checked sexual assault and distaste where very different and unrelated things. No logical connection whatsoever.

            • fiona64

              You are the one who says that when a woman dresses in a particular way, she brings it on herself … (“A woman that cries fowl when she brought this and the attention it got on herself had it coming.”)

              Do you not understand the words you write, “yo”?

              • J man

                Yes in fact I do. Last time I checked it was no crime to think or call something distasteful.

                Thinking that there is a direct relation to one’s distaste and the act of violating another person’s being is quite silly.

            • Sandrilene

              I think this is a troll complete with deliberate spelling mistakes. Who types ‘da piture’ instead of ‘the picture’? Yet in the next comment they refer to ‘one’s distate’ which seems a very formal and old fashioned way of writing.

        • Paulo

          If the “pastor” was a honest, he would have found someone to replace him, the same as in any other contractual obligation. But, those silly Christians… they only owe God (no money to IRS, mind you…).

        • http://confessionsfromthepeanutgallery.blogspot.com/ YankeeCynic

          Yeah, no. You’re an obvious Poe.

    • Paulo

      J man… you are just jealous because because she is independent and beautiful. I can just imagine what type of abuse your wife must suffer. Been studying at the Ariel Castro school of great men, eh?

      • J man

        You are trippin G. I have nothing to be jealous of. Nothing. People can live however they want. I could really care less yo. Just because I respect your right to have choices don’t mean that I gotta respect YOU for making them. See I live in a world where there are consequences to how you behave and where respect is not something you are just straight up given. You gotta earn dat.

        I don’t see nothin empowering about tarting yo ass up like a trick on your wedding day. A woman that thinks this somehow makes her independent or beautiful is a fool. Any man that thinks this I think likewise.

        • fiona64

          People can live however they want. I could really care less yo.

          Then why are you displaying your misogyny by referring to the woman as a whore (note correct spelling), “yo”?

          where respect is not something you are just straight up given. You gotta earn dat. I don’t see nothin empowering

          And I live in a world where deliberate ignorance (such as spelling “that” with a “d,” or using double negatives, or dropping letters from the ends of words) is not respected. I wonder which of us will go further in life …

        • Paulo

          Well, I find your language that of a gang-banging punk. But, of course, that would be my reaction to the way you choose to speak. The difference is that I don’t think my ideas should force you to change your lifestyle. And… for your information, here in Brazil, you boys would not be able to survive, much less condemn others about their clothing choices. Earn dat? You wouldn’t last 24 hours here.

        • CamasBlues

          You misogyny and slut shaming nonsense are disgusting.

    • Paulo

      Forgot to mention… I live in Brazil, and any preacher here that pulled a trick like that on account of his own sexual insecurity would soon be without a congregation.

      • J man

        So what? A preasher or priest’s sexual insecurity has nothing to do with this at all. If he finds this to be counter to his christian values wh y would you expect him to act otherwise. And if he was out out of a congregation than so be. It’s the principle of the thing yo.

  • Daniel Brown

    Really? That’s a wedding dress – man, brides are becoming more and more conceded. Dress doesn’t seems appropriate at all.

    • TKO

      conceited

  • William jenkin

    I want my wife to wear that

  • Paulo

    The Americans never notice (for some reason) that those who complain the most about somebody else’s sexuality are the very ones that end up molesting children, abusing wives and generally treating the human body as a perversion.

  • David DeYoung

    Don’t get married in a church if you want to dress like you’re going to the club. This isn’t about slutshaming marriage is a sacrament in the church so if you don’t wish it to be treated as one don’t get married by a pastor…

    • Paulo

      True enough… hire a clown, there is no difference.

      • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

        Alas, it’s hard to find literal clowns with state-delegated authority to sign the marriage license. Slight difference.

        • RageMojo

          You must not have ever been to Vegas. ;-)

          • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

            True, not impossible; still hard. Isn’t Nevada the only state where you can? Almost certainly you can’t in most of the 50.

        • badgerchild

          Two words: “Clown ministry”. Google and goggle.

          • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

            …OK, maybe you can in most of the 50 after all.

      • David DeYoung

        If you think there’s no difference between a pastor and a clown that’s totally cool, just know what to expect if you want to do a ‘traditional’ wedding.

      • phantomreader42

        No, clowns are less likely to rape children and have significantly lower transportation costs.

  • cady

    I’d hate to side with the Minister, but it’s his choice whether he marries them or not. And if he is one to preach modesty in that way, that’s his right. And while it’s personal choice, I think we can all agree that the dress is better suited to be worn at a club, not at a church wedding

  • Golden8

    Guys hold on….There are two things, in play here. Social etiquette and rules for the chapel part of church. As a mom, I would have been embarrassed to see my daughter dressed like that whether I was religious or not and since weddings are family occasions…(well, see Emily Post on social etiquette). The second issue, is that since the chapel houses the sacrament and is where it is given, for most Christian churches, it is a serious disrespect for a female to dress immodestly, in that area. Remember orthodox women wearing scarves over their head, in cathedrals, etc.? As a former radio/nightclub DJ, I used to wear ‘wow outfits’ to promo events but they fit the occasion! This dress doesn’t fit a church wedding – period and the mother of the bride should have mentioned it, to the Pastor, well in advance. When I, as a non-Catholic, married a Catholic, in a church, I had to meet with his priest for two months, before he cleared us, for a non-mass, non-traditional wedding. I’m amazed that no one pointed out the obvious before the wedding, that the bride was dressing for the cover of ‘Maxim’ instead, by the way. The other point is, I remember as a little girl, having to wear a little hat and gloves, just to shop downtown. On a wedding day, shouldn’t a bride be considerate of how grandma and grandpa or the little flower girls feel, when they look at her?

    • RageMojo

      Frankly, No. I suspect this woman and her friends will simply utilize other services in the future. The Church should always be willing to help anyone, period. I don’t remember Jesus saying he would only help the well dressed or those of a certain demeanor. This is a good example of how far religion and churches have fallen from the original intent and meaning of Jesus teachings. The pastor is NOT doing gods work, he is acting more like an executive in Wells Fargo.

  • Paulo

    Let’s be honest. The Americans are just prudes. Does the dress show any genitalia? Are nipples exposed? What is the ratio of exposed skin to covered skin that is acceptable to God? What does the bible say about wedding dresses? This is just another case of American sexual neurosis. Grow up kids!

  • Denis F

    And I hope the pastor insisted that their children must behave or be stoned to death, after all we have to follow the rules in the book – we can’t just make them up because we feel like it.

  • Ton_Chrysoprase

    Sorry, but the pastor is right. She can wear whatever she wants or go nude for all I care, but if she wants to get married by a priest, she’ll have to abide by some obvious rules.

    • Paulo

      If he had to pay taxes on what he earned, I would agree with the “not in my church stuff”. But, he is a tax-freeloader. Therefore, I cannot respect his personal decision, as he and his organization do not pay their share. Why should he be treated with respect, when he hides behind his religion when it comes to doing his moral part of paying your share. If you deny doing your fair share, you have no right to demand anything of others. He is scamming us all.

      • Ton_Chrysoprase

        Sure, I am all with you on the tax freeloading and all that, but if she shows up in a church like this and expects to get married she fails at western culture.

        The pseudo-libertarian bs further down and the crap about contracts is just really missing the point. There are certain things in life a well adjusted person doesn’t need to be told. A church is not a normal commercial venture and as much as I’d like them all to just disappear I can’t see the issue here.

        • Christopher

          So let me get this straight, I just want to be sure I have this right…

          You believe that if you enter into a contractual business relationship, and have the opportunity when the agreement is being written up to assert protections for your religious beliefs, but choose not to assert these protections, that you should later be able to simply take the fees you have been paid, and walk away from your contractual obligations?

          I just want to be sure this is what you’re asserting by saying “Crap about contracts are missing the point”.

          Also, for tax purposes, yes, Churches are “Normal Commercial Ventures”. More accurately, filing under the 501(c)3 exemption, they qualify as a Tax Exempt Charity Nonprofit Organization. While I would enjoy nothing more than for the need for Religion to disappear as well, in the meantime, we must demand that they follow the law, same as any other For Profit or Non-Profit venture, until they pander and scream themselves into irrelevance.

  • Brittany Lee

    If you don’t want to dress the part get married somewhere else. Every church I’ve ever been to had dress codes that didn’t need to be spoken of if you wore something inappropriate you were asked to cover yourselves and not wear that again. The priest at the catholic church I went to as a child made it clear you would have sleeves or a shaw over your shoulders on your wedding day. Have we all forgotten that the church is about saving yourself for marriage showing up like a cheap whore to deliver your “virginity” to your husband would displease any god fearing christian. Dont like it don’t get married there botantical gardens are lovely and so are beaches her dress wouldve fit in at both.. don’t be stupid and have bad judgement and then blame someone else. Thats like suing mcdonalds because you’re fat.

    • katiehippie

      “Every church I’ve ever been to had dress codes that didn’t need to be spoken off if you wore something inappropriate you were asked to cover yourselves and not wear that again.”

      This makes no sense. If it didn’t need to be spoken off (sic) then why would ever need to be asked to cover yourself.

    • fiona64

      would have sleeves or a shaw over your shoulders

      Shawl.

  • Hate_Chan

    Uh, well why would you go to a church for marriage if you don’t intend to follow its customs

    • Daniel Schealler

      Maybe because it’s a beautiful setting with good acoustics?

      I don’t know what their motives were in electing to have a church as their venue. But more importantly: Why does that even matter? As far as I can see it really doesn’t.

      • Hate_Chan

        Because it’s a religious institution with religious principles to follow. Why do you expect them to just roll with everything progressive when religion generally never does?

        • Daniel Schealler

          You didn’t answer my question. Why does the couple’s intent behind their selection of venue even matter?

          As far as I can see, it doesn’t.

          • Hate_Chan

            Because the venue makes the rules?

            • Daniel Schealler

              What does that have to do with the couple’s intent?

              • Hate_Chan

                I guess I don’t really know what you mean by “couple’s intent” because I don’t see where there opinion matters in the face of a non-democratic establishment’s rules.

                • Daniel Schealler

                  Uh, well why would you go to a church for marriage if you don’t intend to follow its customs

                  Why does their reason for going matter?

  • Whitney

    So…just to clarify, it’s okay to get married dressed as Elvis, or appearing to be twelve months pregnant, or even with the ex-spouse in the wedding party, but a sexy dress? Horrors!! Can’t have that!

    Sure, I think the dress is in poor taste, but hey, it’s not my wedding! Welcome to America!

  • J.p. Ladue

    So was it an hour or mere hours before the ceremony? C’mon Patheos.

  • Reasonable Randy

    It’s not about forcing his views on this woman, she’s in a church and should dress appropriately. If you want to be a part of an organized religion then follow the guidelines they set, if you don’t like them then don’t go to that church or any church for that matter. What happened to common sense and decency in our society? If you want to have fun and wear whatever you’d like them go to Vegas where no one would bat an eye. Any church is no place for a dress like that and any reasonable person that attends any church should know that. Again, there’s no reason you have to be married at a church and I see no problem with her outfit, but if you want to participate in the functions of a place where you are supposed to be pious, humble and obedient to God, then you need to dress for the part.

    • RowanVT

      Wouldn’t being truly pious, humble, and obedient to god require us to be naked? Adam and Eve were initially naked, so that is the the state god intended us to be in from the first.

      The dress that young woman wanted to wear was closer to this ideal than the sort of clothing one typically finds in church.

  • Daniel Schealler

    I struggle to understand why so many people have a problem with a bride who wants to get married in a church and wear a sexy dress while she’s doing it.

    Taboo and tradition are really just the same as saying ‘we don’t like it because we don’t like it’. But that’s mainly what I’m seeing in the comments below, with a bit of ‘think of the children’ thrown in.

    Yeah, this goes against the grain of the traditions about what a bride typically wears when she gets married in a church. I get that. But so what? Why is that a big deal?

  • Golden8

    Good point, Rage Mojo, it is too bad that the pastor didn’t show her the Christ-like compassion that he should have. I’ve seen better men, who love people and have convictions, like my father, heal a situation rather than worsen it. As a doctor, he gave the poor and elderly a discount at his practice and would accept barter for his services. At the same time, he cared for everyone’s spirit and self-esteem, around him. As a spiritual leader, in this situation, he would have counseled the girl listening to her reasons and worked out a solution, rather than just walk away from her and the ceremony. My mother probably would have whipped up a beautiful cape or jacket for her…haha

  • Michael Caton

    A couple days before my friend and his wife got married, the priest
    bailed. It was a Catholic ceremony and both my friend and his fiancee
    were divorced. The priest new this. It turned into a nicer ceremony
    IMHO with several friends (including yours truly) reading the vows and
    taking commitments from the couple. I’m actually fine with a church
    saying “We don’t marry divorcees/gay people/scantily clad women/etc.” as
    long as this is known ahead of time so people can take their business
    elsewhere. But what kind of trailer trash scum bag backs out at the
    last minute like this? And I’ve many, many other stories of men of the
    cloth pulling similar shenanigans.

  • Brian Lee Bohnet

    Would you go to mass/service in that dress? God No.

    So who in their right mind would think it’s appropriate to wed?

    And why do Bride & Groom’s always think it’s “Their” day. No, It’s God’s day; that he brought two of his children together to more aptly work out his will.

    If you want a Jersey Shore wedding, go to the county clerk office and do the ceremony there. Don’t bring this to a church.

    • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

      God’s fine with cleavage and legs. Fine with penises and vaginas, too. God was totally a-ok with Adam and Eve in the garden being naked, right? So why would God care one iota what people were wearing at a wedding?

      • badgerchild

        Good point. God created bodies, didn’t he?

      • Brian Lee Bohnet

        We don’t live in the garden of eden anymore. Why? Cause some feminist thought the rules didn’t apply to her.

        Don’t compare the church to the Garden.

        • Bo_Rebel

          AHAHAHAHAHAHA!! You mean Eve was tricked by something God created himself and new it all along because it was part of his divine plan, but apparently cant change things, yet his plan is perfect!!! HAHAHA

        • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ Feminerd

          But you said the dress was insulting to God, not to the church. I’m just saying it’s not. Who gives a rat’s ass about the church’s feelings? It’s a freaking institution.

          If you read your Bible closely, you’ll note God never told Eve not to eat from the tree, just Adam. So why should the rules apply to her? I mean, granted, it’s just a creation myth/story, but if you think it’s real, then you should at least pay attention to what it actually says. And think how awful it would be to be stuck in the emotional and moral development of toddlers (amoral, with no knowledge of right and wrong). You really think that would be a good thing? You should be down on your knees thanking Eve every day for letting humanity grow up.

        • baal

          If god cared that much he could have put the tree on the other side of the planet or done a better job on making human inherently obedient (i mean even more than we are).

    • fiona64

      And why do Bride & Groom’s always think it’s “Their” day. No, It’s
      God’s day; that he brought two of his children together to more aptly
      work out his will.

      Which must be why no one is ever married by a justice of the peace or a deputized friend.

      Oh, wait.

  • Evidentist

    “Wedding days are supposed to be a celebration of a couple, not an opportunity to be slut-shamed by a pastor.”

    Well, then you should not invite a pastor to your celebration, let alone as master of your ceremony. I cannot find that the pastor has no right to insist on his own decency standards in his own church. Nobody is forced to marry in churches, nowadays.

  • Rhett J D.

    What you get for going to a church to get married

    • Eric Rosario

      Agreed. I’d just assume some strict standard just by considering a church. When you involve religion there are all kinds of skewed standards.

  • Jen

    I’m guessing the pastor went back to his office for a wank.

    • Sieben Stern

      no, he only likes boys.

  • Laser

    “Even though you will likely consummate your marriage after this…. this is just too sexy to be acceptable”

  • alex.a

    I am compelled to disagree with the posts seeing the woman as a victim. If she was so damn stupid to dress like that an a religion that shuns human body then she deserved it. I can’t blame the priest for acting like he was supposed to, meaning like a religious retard. Still i enjoy the irony of the thing.

    • badgerchild

      You’re a curious case… you call the pastor a “religious retard” and appear to disapprove of his behavior… yet you approve of it when applied to the woman? It sounds just like someone “yeah I know he’s a trailer-trash wife-beater, but his wife deserved it for marrying him”. Your remote, anthropology-professor loftiness doesn’t hide the fact that you’re advocating significant harm to someone who did no harm.

  • Danny Sims

    That is a sexy dress. At least it is on the model.

  • JWH

    There is a reason that I don’t wear a body-hugging muscle shirt and tight gym shorts at work. Because it’s not appropriate office attire. Appropriate attire isn’t about “slut-shaming.” It’s about recognizing that certain clothing is appropriate for certain settings … and that cocktail dress is certainly not appropriate for a wedding.

    • Dress2Emperess

      Good answer, JWH!

      • badgerchild

        Bad answer. The punishment was disproportionate to the crime. Cancelling a woman’s wedding an hour before the event, causing her and her family and other attendees significant cost and shame, in order to humiliate her and prove his petty, fussy, religious point, is just plain overkill. If his dress code was so fucking important that he was willing to pull a drastic stunt like that, why wasn’t it worth discussing it with her beforehand?

  • Dress2Emperess

    Did everyone completely miss the fact that this was a HOLINESS Church? HOLINESS Churches are the strictest of churches when it comes to MODESTY. So if this woman, or her groom-to-be had ANY family that was a member of this church, they would ALL know that right up front. This bride was in the wrong, and she knew it up front, whether she accepted it or not.

    • baal

      It was actually a rent-a-church in a converted shoe store at a mall. When I hear, “converted shoe store” modesty is not the first mental item on the list. Also, I had no idea that HOLINESS (in all caps no less) churches existed let alone details on its potential stands on a number of issues.

      • Dress2Emperess

        WHERE did it say “rent-a-church in a converted shoe store at a mall”? ALL CAPS is for emphasis, since it seems to concern you, because one cannot use ITALICS or UNDERLINING in the presented format. Also, if one is going to debate the pros and cons of a situation, one should acquaint themselves with the particulars of the subject being debated. Perhaps you should consider inserting an ‘n’ between the two a’s in your name.

        • baal

          I can’t use italics and underlining.

          ” Perhaps you should consider inserting” Emperesns; indeed!

          From the first link in the OP:

          The Truth Ministries Holiness Church was established 14 months ago and currently rent a converted shoe store for worship services. Calls to Apostle Canty and Truth Ministries were not returned. Neither the bride
          or groom were members of the church.”

          I see all caps as shouting. The formatting is done via tags. The i tag is for italics and u is for underline. &lti&gt word &lt/i&gt

          As to particulars, my point is that If I don’t know some features of some churches I expect other people to have similar levels of knowledge or not. Also, the various protestant sects get to be pretty small and splintered (hence the emo williams joke). That’s not the same case as we have with the RCC where I somewhat expect everyone in the knows about the trinity and roughly what the norms are for a RCC church wedding in the Church.

          • Dress2Emperess

            Perhaps you should have told me one could use italics and underlining before I presented my CAPS. I was unfamiliar one could use ‘tags’, since I am simply commenting, not coding. Shame on you for failing to know that I would show up with CAPS instead of tagged comments. Perhaps I should sue you? You have just ruined my day.

            • baal

              If you were paying me and we had a business or faith relationship and I knew you needed a way to be strong in your presentation, I would have. The pastor should be asking “are you familiar with out church” as part of the wedding planning. Most churches do a walk through and hit stuff like this. Hell, the local Mongolian barbeque restaurants do that much.

              • Dress2Emperess

                banal

                • baal

                  if you add another a and n you get
                  bananal

                • badgerchild

                  Upthread, you snark at someone for not staying on topic. I suppose that’s your idea of an argument?

            • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

              Oh, right, it’s our fault you Did Not Do The Research.

              Grow up and own your fuck-ups, man.

              • Dress2Emperess

                Sarcasm is lost on you, isn’t it, wmdkitty?

                • badgerchild

                  She was responding to your petulance, not your sarcasm. I’m beginning to see why you need this sort of thing spelled out to you. You are no longer worth engaging. Your “arguments” are beginning to parody themselves.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Nope, I’m a Disabled Snarker.

                  You weren’t being sarcastic, you were blaming us for your ignorance when you could have easily googled the information yourself.

        • fiona64

          You can’t use italics and underlining in the present format? Probably can’t use bold type either, then.

          Wow, that’s unfortunate.

  • Dress2Emperess

    Churches are nothing more than one group’s opinions on a set of stated rules. They are ALL made-up, no matter where they find their inspiration. This church has a code of tenets which it promotes and this young woman’s attire violated that.

    • badgerchild

      Sure, all arbitrary sets of rules designed to body-shame and slut-shame are more important than treating people with dignity.

  • Ed Selby

    This is one time when I’ll side with the church. His church. His rules. Should there have been a discussion on what was appropriate bridal attire? Maybe. Was he a dick? Surely. Was he “wrong”? Nope.

    • badgerchild

      You “my house, my rules” people sicken me. You think all manner of mistreatment is A-OK so long as the guy in charge gets to call the shots. Don’t forget, in your zeal to defend the pastor’s “freedom”, what kind of shitty, abusive, callous behavior you’re standing up for.

      • Ed Selby

        The “shitty, abusive, callous behavior” I’m standing up for is the freedom for a religious leader to express, defend, and live by his beliefs – especially in the church/temple/mosque where he leads.

        I don’t have to agree with him. I don’t have to like him. But he is the leader of that church and has the responsibility to demand whatever decorum he thinks is right. If he screws it up too much or too often, the folks as that church will fire him.

  • Lauren

    People need to stop picking and choosing which rules to follow and which not to. If you want to stress modesty, then state how women must have their heads covered in public worship. I Corinthians 11:6. Martin Luther believed married women should have veils, and Calvin taught women should have their heads covered in public worship. It wasn’t until the early 1900s women stopped having to cover their heads. Ever wonder why the older women wore hats in church, but the men had to take the hats off?

  • JaniceStJanice

    The fact that the Pastor refused to marry them is wrong, I agree. But, who would wear that as a wedding dress? That dress is from a lingerie website, anybody with even a shred of common sense should know that it’s not an appropriate wedding dress based on that fact alone. Too me, it looks more like the dress you put on after the wedding when it’s time to get freaky with the groom in the back seat of the limo. Haha.

    • badgerchild

      There are lots of people without “a shred of common sense”. They aren’t fair game to be mistreated.

  • JKG

    There are plenty of places where one can marry and not be expected to dress a certain way. A church is not such a place, and if this woman wanted to marry in a church, she should have used her judgment as to how to dress appropriately. I am not religious at all, and yet I respect the right of a pastor to refuse to marry a woman who is dressed like she’s going out on the Vegas strip.

  • Meowazepam

    What if she was just really fat?

    • badgerchild

      I see a few people have disapproved of this, but I can see it two ways. I think people are seeing it as you saying, “Well if she was really fat, then she looked horrible and I can understand his reaction”, which is missing the point.

      So, OK, what if she was really fat? Would that have entitled the pastor to act as he did any more than if she was really thin? What if she was of a race that he disliked? What if she had body odor? What if she reminded him of his ex-wife? The point is that all of that is utterly irrelevant. The issue is that he was not entitled to harm her for something she did that was harmless, and it doesn’t matter whether he was within or without his church.

  • tacobellscanon

    A wedding in a Christian church is not simply a celebration of the couple. It is a commitment to dedicate the marriage to God. In a Christian marriage the focus of both man and woman is to have Jesus at the center of their relationship. In the Catholic Church marriage is a sacrament that is administered by the church. It is not simply a ceremony that the couple pays for to use the building. If this woman didn’t want to be “slut-shamed” as you say, she shouldn’t have chosen the slut-dress. If she wanted to wear this she should have chosen a cheesy chapel in Las Vegas.

    • badgerchild

      “She should have known she and her wedding guests were going to be cheated and humiliated.” So nice of you to defend the pastor’s religious abuse.

  • Eileen

    Whatever happened to common sense? Why would a person dress so immodestly in church? We have lost our way, folks!

    • badgerchild

      What way is that and how have we lost it, and what, if you’ll pardon the pun, is so sacred about church? The pastor wasn’t entitled to respond so severely to such a mild offense. If the position of the church is that wearing the dress in question was an act of actual sexual misconduct, then they are entitled to their opinion, but they are not entitled to abuse people for it. The woman caused no harm. The pastor caused harm. I suggest you think about that.

  • Revenwyn

    Is that her dress or is that her wedding night lingerie? It looks more like the latter.

  • Justin

    So…does he refuse to marry divorced couples too?

  • Jared Steffen

    Thought I’d be outraged at the pastor until I saw the dress. Skantopia. I feel sorry for the groom.

  • Michael R

    I’m an atheist but I no longer call myself that because of articles like this, that are perpetuating the stereotype of the angry/intolerant atheist. Atheism as an identity is damaged goods. Hooray, you killed it. R.I.P atheism. Killed by Lauren Lane and David Silverman et al. You should rename your blog FriendlyAtheistSnickerSnicker. FFS show some respect for other people’s standards, religious or not. Modesty, in an appropriate setting such as a marriage ceremony, is an entirely HUMAN desire for many people, religious or not.

    • badgerchild

      Feel free to apply your personal standards of modesty to yourself. You don’t have to get married in the dress if it offends you. Just because you think “ick” does not make her action wrong any more than gay marriage is inappropriate just because you think it’s icky.

      • Michael R

        Hypocrite. I’m all for freedom, you’re the intolerant one, not me. If they can find a church and pastor who approves of the dress, great. My point is: don’t expect your standards to be universally acceptable. That is the intolerance you accuse me of.

        • badgerchild

          That’s some twisted reasoning you have there. You’re all for the freedom of a church to harm people who didn’t do anything to harm them. Have fun in Scientology.

          • Michael R

            Yes it’s quite obvious that you can see no harm. That’s your problem. You are the typical badgering atheist who can only see things from their selfish point of view. And that’s why I don’t use the label ‘atheist’ anymore. Atheism is dead.

            • badgerchild

              Atheism is dead? Then what name will you give the position that there is no, or no credible, evidence of a god or gods?

              I smell a rat. If you meant what you said, maybe you’d have said “the modern atheist movement” or “the current school of mainstream atheist thought”. Instead you walk around like the hermit in the cartoon proclaiming “[(God is dead) is dead]“. Just saying.

              • Michael R

                I’m talking about atheism the brand, it’s tarnished, so I no longer use the word. Now I have to use other words that don’t have the negative connotations of being an angry/intolerant/negative atheist e.g. skeptic, non-believer, non-religious, humanist, etc. It’s not the technical definitions of these words that matter, what matters is that I can use these words in a conversation and not be typecast as an angry atheist. It matters if you’re trying to have a constructive and respectful conversation with believers.

  • Sieben Stern

    too bad he’s not so ticked off about priests raping kids.

    OH but boobies! naughy pillows wrought by the hands of satan himself – can’t have those!!!

  • John Cook

    The minister of same was possibly embarrassed by a bit of wood and had to depart before it became visible.

  • Erica Cable Meyer

    Ok, how can anyone look at that dress and still say he was a dictator or judgmental or whatever other nasty comments you want to fill in the blank with. Noone in their right mind would say that dress would be appropriate in a church.

  • Len

    “The Truth Ministries Holiness Church” and the dress has holes. So what’s the problem?

  • Orvietto

    There is more mystery in being tastefully dressed, seems like the groom has nothing new to discover on his wedding night, all is already bared, give me the anticipation and the expectation and the excitement of uncovering the mystery. Oh what Bliss !!!

  • Anon E Mous

    Aw come on y’all. This is America. You know we are free to do whatever we want. Unless you are a Christian, that is. Then every thing you do is considered wrong, hateful, mean-spirited, judgmental and a million other negative adjective. Because people want to do whatever they want and don’t want to feel like there is any reason to answer to anyone for anything. That’s what makes this country so flippin’ awesome! America, land of if it feels good do it. America, where you can whine “you’re not the boss of me!”, stomp you feet, pout and sue the shirt off anyone who disagrees with you dressing like a stripper at your wedding because gosh darnit I have a right to force everyone to look at my breasts, butt and whatever else might “accidentally” show in a dress that slutty oops I meant short. They both begin with s. America where just because I dress like a hooker doesn’t mean you should look at me like that. Huh-uge eye roll! not to mention SMH

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      Your persecution complex and inability to read the arguments below are noted.


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