Why Couples Are Saying 'I Do' to Weddings in Funeral Homes

hands of bride and groom

"'Til death do us part." It's in most wedding vows, and hopefully the couple actually mean every word. If not, a strange new trend  -- that is, having your wedding ceremony at a funeral home -- is, uh, bringing that point home.


According to Catholic news website Crux, it's not necessarily death-obsessed couples driving this trend so much as funeral parlors.

Insert "It's a dying business!" joke here.

But no, really. It kinda is. People are opting for cheaper, less extravagant funeral services. Or skipping the casket route altogether in favor of cremation, which is super-popular and only expected to become more so.

So what's a funeral home operator to do?

Answer: Look for other, non-death-related ways to serve their communities and bring in the cash, apparently. And a big source is weddings.

According to Crux, the Community Life Center in Indianapolis (aka a building run by the Washington Park East Cemetery Association) is booked nearly every weekend this summer for weddings AND already reserving for 2016. It's a $10-million building so it's probably gorgeous ... expecting you can overlook the 73,000 tombstones nearby.

But surprisingly, getting hitched at a death-y place isn't necessarily cheaper than getting married at, say, a swanky hotel or B&B. The peak rate for the CLC in Indianapolis, for instance, comes in right under $4,000. But the average wedding venue cost in the U.S. is typically between $2,710 and $4,516.

More from The Stir: Couple's Dramatic Death-Themed Wedding Photos Actually Aren't So Weird

So what else is driving the choice to get married while surrounded by dead people, or at least the vibes of death, if not a wedding budget?

A religion professor interviewed by Crux suggested that people "aren't as religious as they once were ... and their attitudes towards death are changing."

Instead of dour services where people dress in black and where "grief" is the only acceptable expression, today's funerals are more "celebrations of life" that involve slideshows, food, and, yes, even alcohol.

Is it just me or does that sounds kinda like a ... wedding?


Image via Kam Samanvorawong/shutterstock

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