Smartphones and cameras are a distraction.  Your guests are starring through their Smartphone or camera, they are not 100% present.  I always make it a point at the beginning of every ceremony to have the couple turn and acknowledge their guests.  Everyone loves to be acknowledged, and I always sense an invisible wall that separates the guests and wedding party begin to crumble, creating a more intimate space.

 Over the past several years, I have begun to notice something quite odd to behold at the beginning of most weddings.  I usually turn the couple to face their guests, while saying, “Sandra and Herb, take a look at those faces!  These are some of the most important people in your lives…” Now, more than ever, I am having the couple turn, while I say, “Take a look at those faces and cell phones.”  Everyone has a good laugh visualizing what the couple must be looking at.  After acknowledging the guests, I say, “Sandra and Herb went through a lot of photographers before they selected the ones that you see around you.  Since they are doing such a great job capturing this moment, please put your devices away, so that you can be completely present with what is about to happen.” 

 Anyone who is distracted doing anything during a ceremony can’t help but not have the same experience as someone who is totally immersed in the event.  Maximize the energy that surrounds your ceremony, and ask for the guests’ cooperation.

Barry Tuchman