All About Engagement Announcements

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Now that you’re engaged, all you want to do is shout it from the rooftops! Well, if you’ve ever fancied seeing your name and photo in a national newspaper why not consider an engagement announcement?

A what?

An engagement announcement is a type of announcement placed in a local newspaper, usually in the city where the bride and groom live, in the bride’s parents hometown, and in the groom’s parents hometown.

The tradition of engagement announcements dates back over a thousand years, to an old mandate by the Catholic Church.  This mandate stated that a couple must announce their intention to get married to the community three times… in case there were any objections.

Today’s engagement announcements are far more secular they’re just a nice way of letting people know about your engagement.  They’re also a lovely keepsake for your wedding scrapbook!

Sounds good!  Where do I start?

Many Irish newspapers offer engagement announcements, including The Irish Times and The Irish Independent.

Start by ringing to find out what sort of information the paper requires, whether you can include a photograph, the price (if applicable), and who to send the announcement to.

Next you’ll want to figure out how to word the announcement.  Traditionally it was the bride’s family who sent in the engagement announcement, as it was the bride’s parents who would be hosting and paying for the wedding.  Today, of course, things have changed, and not everyone sticks with what is traditional.  Couples often pay for the wedding themselves, and parents may have separated or sadly passed away.

Not to worry, we’ve got you covered!  We’ve come up with different wordings for different situations just substitute your own names!

Traditional Wording:

Mr and Mrs John O’Neill of (town), (county) are delighted to announce the engagement of their daughter Maria to James Johnson, son of Mr and Mrs David Johnson of (town), (county). The wedding is planned for (date) at (place).

If YOU are announcing your engagement:

Maria O’Neill and James Johnson are engaged!  Maria is the daughter of Mr and Mrs John O’Neill of (town), (county) and James is the son of Mr and Mrs David Johnson of (town), (county). The wedding is planned for (date) at (place).

Alternate wordings:

Divorced parents:

Mr. John O’Neill of (town), (county), and Sarah Rogers of (town), (county), announce the engagement of their daughter…

Divorced parents, but remarried:

Ms. Sarah Rogers and Mr. Patrick Smith of (town), (county) announce the engagement of Ms. Rogers’ daughter, Maria O’Neill, to James Johnson… Maria is also the daughter of John O’Neill of (town), (county).

Note: If your other biological parent wasn’t involved in raising you, there is no need to include them in the engagement announcement.  Instead you  may want to follow the traditional wording, using your parent and step-parent’s names.

One parent deceased:

The engagement of Maria O’Neill, daughter of Mrs Sarah O’Neill and the late John O’Neill to James Johnson, son of Mr and Mrs David Johnson, is announced by the bride’s mother…

Note: If you don’t want to include the date and place of your wedding, feel free to be as vague as you like.  You could say: – a July wedding is planned- a summer wedding is planned- or not mention when the wedding will be (a good option if you haven’t set a date yet)

This will keep invited guests in suspense, and eagerly awaiting their save-the-date cards or invitations.  It will also stop uninvited guests from knowing when and where your wedding will take place!

And finally…If you need a laugh, have a look at what one couple from Freeport, Maine, wrote as their engagement announcement here!

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