As the popularity of common-law unions has continued to climb, organizations that advocate marriage are campaigning to save matrimony – with some very visual, and sometimes controversial, approaches.
The Church of England’s angle of aggressively trying to sell marriage in the Church caught our eye early. Â We just show them “hawkingÂ their wares” at a wedding fair in Thoroughly Modern Marriage. But the move that caused a lot ofÂ controversy was their offer of free baptisms if you “bought” a marriage inÂ the Church. This was because they discovered 1 in every 5 couples who gotÂ married in the Church of England already had children. So they thought, “wellÂ we may as well offer to baptize them”. Problem is, the Church does notÂ condone sex before marriage. There was an uproar and the idea was dropped.
And in addition to groups pushing for people to GET married, there’s also a well designed movement to KEEP people married.
Huge billboards in the US make arguments that appeal to our self-interest: Â “MarriedÂ people live longer…Married people make more money”
And the Smart Marriage movement has a massive following with conferences, retreats and marriage classes.
The battle for the hearts and minds of couples, like marriage itself, is not likely to disappear anytime soon.