Q: OCM #62 has the bridegroom declare his consent before the bride declares hers. Is there a reason for this? Is it allowable to vary the order?
Thanks for your most helpful ministry.
A: Looking at the research I did for Inseparable Love, I’d say it’s been that way for hundreds of years. I’m not sure why. Could it be one of these reasons?
1) Having the groom go first protects the bride from declaring her consent to him without him returning the favor and gathering a few more partners.
2) The groom is the one taking the bride more than the bride is the one taking the groom, as was evidenced in the single-ring ceremony of the past. So perhaps, perhaps there was an antecedent that had him take her without her taking him, but I see no evidence of that.
3) Men were considered superior to women, so they went first.
But I really don’t know.
Can you vary the order? No. And please don’t. You don’t want to create a situation where a few years from now someone could question the validity of the couple’s consent because they didn’t give it the right way.