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Everything posted by murphzlaw1

  1. The ULC does not issue an "online" credential of any kind. There have been facsimile certificates provided by ULC web sites in the past, however such online certificates were never the official credential of the church, and thus, were never valid for purposes of registration as a marriage minister. They represented a form of receipt, or online confirmation that the ordination application had been received and the information provided to the church headquarters for recording. Although the written documentation accompanying these certificates made it clear that these were not the official certificate of the church, many people attempted to use them to register, which created problems. Some government officials began to get the idea that the Universal Life Church was an "online church" and that ordinations were being done automatically by a computer. In order to prevent this from occurring again in the future, the Board of Directors has put a stop to the practice of issuing any documents online which might be mistakenly used by someone to attempt to register as a wedding minister. This policy is intended to protect the integrity of the ordination process and to avoid giving the impression that the church is anything other than a serious and regularly established church.
  2. Ordination with the Universal Life Chruch does not expire. However, with the proliferation of scam sites over the past few years, it is advisable for you to verify that your ordination is on file with the true Universal Life Church. If in doubt, email your full name and address information, along with any previous address you may have used for ordination, and we will verify it for you. You may email to or submit a ticket using our support ticket system. (
  3. The Monastery ( in Seattle is in no way affiliated with the real Universal Life Church in Modesto, California. Some of their leadership were reportedly involved with the ULC Monastery in Tucson, Arizona which is a long-time, legitimate associate of the ULC. Brother Daniel Zimmerman, president of the ULC Monastery in Tucson, reports that without permission, the group in Seattle transferred the domain name of his Tucson Monastery ( to their control. It now forwards to This has caused a great deal of confusion, and the Seattle group seems to be attempting to suggest to their visitors that they are part of the original ULC, or even that they ARE church Headquarters! Church headquarters terminated any remaining ties with them several years ago. Ordinations and other transactions conducted with the ULC Monastery since that time are entirely unrelated to the original ULC in Modesto. Here are some links to stories related to the activities and leadership of the Seattle group, for your reference: http://en.wikipedia....Dance_Ordinance http://www.thestrang...ontent?oid=1895 http://archives.thed...club100396.html http://www.azstarnet...eadlines/158700 http://www.usatoday....marriages_N.htm http://dockets.justi.../case_id-343852 http://dockets.justi...case_id-343556/ http://dockets.justi...case_id-343591/ http://publicinforma...antNumber=20683 There are some sites out there that are deceiving people, so check your payment record to see who processed your payment. Make sure it was not a site calling itself the "Monastery" in Seattle, Washington as they have nothing to do with the Universal Life Church whatsoever. They have deceptive statements on their website which lead visitors to believe they are dealing with the real Universal Life Church, but they are not connected to the church in any way. Many people have reported sending them money and not receiving anything in return, and any in case, the materials you will receive from them, if any, are not from the ULC and their ordinations are not recognized. There are currently legal proceedings and investigations underway which hope to stop their deceptive practices.
  4. You are not required to have a number assigned to you as a ULC minister. The ULC does not assign numbers to its ministers. That is something the state likes to do, number people. But we have found that many people don't like to be numbered, so we don't do it. If you encounter a form which asks for your number, you can simply write "N/A" or "none".
  5. Please use the web site to submit your change of address information. It is important that you provide complete information regarding your change of address, both your old and new address is required, including complete street address. If you have changed your name for any reason, your ordination record can only be updated after you provide copies of the name change documentation (marriage documents, court name change documents). You may send them by email to, or by fax to 916-244-0498.
  6. There is only one doctrine in the Universal Life Church: Do ONLY that which is right. Each person bears the responsibility to peacefully determine what is right, and to refrain from interfering with the rights of others. We stand for absolute freedom of religion in regard to peaceful practices. This doctrine does not deny any person the freedom to peacefully choose their path. What YOU believe is what is important. Believe it with all your heart, while continuing to grow in your pursuit of truth and righteousness. We believe you are ordained already, by God. However, the government does not accept ordination from God, so the Universal Life Church makes it possible for you to become ordained in the sight of the government, and to pursue your own beliefs and ministry, according to the dictates of your heart. ULC ministers follow a wide variety of spiritual paths, some of them are even bizarre or offensive. The Universal Doctrine does not conflict with any peaceful belief system, nor attempt to control the beliefs of others, including the church ministers. However anything you hear beyond "Do only that which is right", is not Universal Doctrine, it is simply the beliefs of an individual. It does not matter if that person is the founder of the church, the host of a web site, or a derelict on Skid Row. All are equal in this church. The ULC is a real church, and very sincere in its mission. Some ULC ministers are not sincere, but we do not judge their intent. The ULC will ordain all who ask, without cost, for life, and without question of faith. The church has been doing this since it began in 1959, and has grown steadily through the years.. Today, there are ministers and congregations around the globe. ULC International Headquarters is in Modesto, California, housed in an historic church complex. Services are held there each Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m.
  7. The Universal Life Church issues several degrees, and all degrees issued by the church are recorded in the permanent church records. The church has been in existence since 1959, retaining records of all ordinations and degrees issued since then. The degrees convey rank, title, or status within the church. They do not convey academic standing or achievement. They are accredited by the International Accrediting Association (I.A.A.), which is the accreditation arm of the church. This means that the course, degree, or title has been approved and endorsed by the I.A.A. by authority of the Board of Directors. If you have questions related to the issuance of church degrees and titles, you should direct them to Would I place a ULC title on a resume, application for employment or academic standing? In most cases, I would not. It would not be ethical to represent a degree as something other than what it is in order to obtain something to which you are not otherwise entitled. For example, if someone with a Doctor of Divinity were to don a white lab coat over surgical scrubs, drape a stethescope around his neck while calling himself Doctor So-and-so offering health screening, he would be engaging in fraud, contrary to the Universal Doctrine. He'd also be at risk of finding himself engaged in a full-time prison ministry! If the same person wore a clerical collar, offered you a business card introducing himself as Dr. So and So, it would be entirely appropriate. In some cases, you may be prohibited from listing such degrees on an application, because it relates to a church organization. In no case would I include such information under the heading of Education, nor as Specialized Training. It would be more appropriate to list these credentials under the heading of Titles, Awards, or Other Achievements. Nor would I use it to meet any minimum job requirement standards. In some few cases, your status as an ordained minister may be relevant. For example, if you were applying for a job as a wedding minister at a Las Vegas Chapel, you would have to be an ordained minister, capable of performing lawful marriage in Clark County. In such a case, your status as an ordained minister with the ULC would be highly relevant. It would appropriate to include any and all other ULC titles and degrees you have in this situation. If the employer should suspect that you are attempting to pass off your religious titles as academic training, or to qualify for a pay raise, you would lose a lot of credibility. The Universal Life Church does not impose a tithe (tax) on its members, as is so popular in many of the big dog churches. Heck, at ULC they don't even pass the plate at Sunday services! People contribute to the fraternal and financial requirements of this organization in other ways, in whatever way they are moved by Spirit to participate. One person may bring an offering of brownies & milk to services, while another may offer a refreshing beverage to the celebration of fraternity. On a broader scale, members of the ULC contribute financial support through their support of the church's instructional mission, as well as the Degree, Sainthood, Congregation, Title, and other church related items. Your support of the ULC Bookstore ( helps to maintain and promote this historic church. All courses, titles and degrees offered on ULC.NET are the official issue of the original Univeral Life Church in Modesto, CA. In existence since 1959. Did you know that the Doctor of Divinity and similar degrees are considered "honorary" titles, regardless of the institution which issues the degree? ULC's honorary religious degrees are issued to commemorate your understanding of church principles, and in recognition that you are the world's foremost authority on what you believe. The earned degrees we offer (those requiring a passing score on a test or completion of written work) further convey satisfactory completion of a course of instruction related to the principles, beliefs and practices of spiritual belief and church operations. Each degree includes a certificate with printed gold seal, showing your name and the date degree was granted. The certificates are 8.5x11, suitable for framing. If you'd like to participate, you may visit our "ULC Outlet Store" (online) at
  8. If your name change occurs due to a change in your marital status, you can report it simply by sending an email to us or creating a ticket. If you place an order, you can provide the needed information with your order. Just include it in the "special instructions", at checkout. We will need all of the following information: Your full current name Your full name as it was listed when ordained Your full current address (including street number and ZIP code Your full former address(es) where you were living when ordained. If the name change occurs for a reason other than marriage, you will need to also provide us with a copy of the name change documentation from the court. Send the documentation, along with your request, and all information such as your old and new name, your current address, and your prior address, if it has changed since ordination. You needn't provide full-color, high resolution copies. Just as long as it's legible. You may send a scanned image by email to, or by fax to 1-916-244-0498 Mailing address: ULC Online PO Box 2039 Citrus Heights CA 95611
  9. The doctrine of the Universal Life Church is two fold: 1) Do ONLY that which is right. 2) Each person has the duty and responsibility to determine for himself what is right, and to refrain from interfering with the rights of others. We stand for freedom of religion. This doctrine, while strongly supported by Scripture and Christ's teaching, does not deny any person the freedom to chose a different path. It is inclusive, not exclusionary. It is not in conflict with anything in the Holy Bible, nor with any peaceful belief system anywhere. The price of this freedom is that there will inevitably be those who follow spiritual paths which we find bizarre or even offensive. We do not have support or encourage beliefs which conflict with our own individual belief systems. To deny any person the freedom to choose would be to deny some of the very reasons Christ came and died! The Universal Life Church has many Christians among its ordained ministers, including many who are also ordained ministers of other Christian churches. Our purpose is to come between you and the government, not you and God. What YOU believe is what is important. Believe it with all your heart, while continuing to grow in "wisdom, and in stature, and in favor with God and man!" We are united in our desire to seek only truth.
  10. Each congregation of the Universal Life Church is a distinct legal entity, responsible for its own affairs and finances. A minimum of three persons must serve as officers and the board of directors. From there, the board of directors will vote to adopt by-laws, or a constitution and to make resolutions to govern the affairs of the church. One resolution that you will want to make from the start is a resolution authorizing someone to apply for an Employee Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS. This can be done by phone, mail, in person, or on the Internet:,,id=98350,00.html Churches, as defined by the IRS, fall under 501c3 by default, and are not required to complete the complex filing procedure to be formally recognized as such. It is optional, and in my opinion, is tantamount to asking the IRS for permission to be a church, thus waiving an essential right of religious freedom. On the IRS web site, you will find a list of 14 points that it considers in making the determination as to whether an organization is a church or not. You do not have to meet all of the 14 points, and the IRS does not make public the manner in which it "scores" this evaluation. Suffice to say that the more of the points you meet, the stronger your case will be should your organization's church status ever be called into question. If you do not yet meet some of the points listed, but plan to in the future, it would be wise to include a discussion of your future plans at a board meeting and to subsequently approve a resolution proclaiming your intentions.,00.html Additional discussion of what is involved is provided on the IRS web site: Formal affiliation with the ULC in Modesto is not required, although doing so may be useful to support the position that your organization is a real church. Formal affiliation with the "Mother Church", as well as with other organizations for churches, such as the ECFA ( can help establish that the church adheres to professional standards and fraternal affiliation. ULC Church charters may be arranged directly though ULC Headquarters in Modesto. It is important that you transact this agreement directly with ULC Headquarters. I consider the "Zondervan Book" (referenced below) to be an essential reference for starting a church. If you have a church or plan to start one, you must obtain a copy of this book. It will save you a lot of time, frustration, confusion, and can easily save your church from making a costly mistake. Even if you have a CPA or attorney involved in setting up your church, get a copy of this book and take it with you to any meetings you have with your advisor. It can provide quick, authoritative answers to questions which they might otherwise charge you to "research". You can download the forms for starting your congregation, as well as for record keeping, at: To affiliate your local congregation with ULC, complete the form and return it to ULC Headquarters, 601 Third Street, Modesto, CA 95351. The $35 fee donation is submitted directly to ULC Headquarters. Quarterly report forms can be obtained from ULC Headquarters, and will be available shortly on the web site ( The $5 monthly administrative fee donation may be paid quarterly and submitted to HQ along with your quarterly reports. When starting a congregation, be sure to structure things correctly, legally, and for your congregation's best advantage. Expert guidance in this area is available in the Zondervan Tax and Financial Guide for Churches and Non-profit Organizations. It is published annually by the respected Zondervan Publishing House. Included are a wide range of "sample minutes", providing suggested wording for board resolutions covering ministers compensation, benefits packages, housing allowance, establishing bank accounts and credit. Extensive coverage on the subject of taxation is included. This highly recommended reference was written by an independent specialist in the field. You'll get no-nonsense information, which is easy to read and understand. It will be your guide through the maze of information and legalities involved in this complex topic. You may even save thousands of dollars in lawyer and CPA fees. Do things correctly from the very beginning! You'll find the Zondervan book at: After you start your congregation, be sure to list it in our online directory: We look forward to hearing from you about the progress of your ministry!
  11. You may order your ordination credential certificate, wallet credential, degrees and courses, ceremony books, and any other items you may need on our web site: You may use the web site to create your order even if you prefer not to actually order online. At "checkout" you will have the option to print your order for mailing. You may also send it by fax, or you can call and place your order by telephone on our toll-free number, 1-888-ULC-TODAY. If you don't have a printer attached to your computer, you can simply write down the order number, and we will be able to use that to locate and process your order. If you do not know your exact ordination date, give your best guess, and tell us that it is an estimate. We'll look up your ordination date prior to shipping your new credential. Also, if you have moved since ordination, please let us know. You can provide your "old address" in the "special instructions" (at checkout) so we can locate and update your records.
  12. Universal Life Church ministers officiate marriages in all 50 states, as well as many places outside of the U.S. However, since local laws vary widely, and are subject to change, you should verify current information with your local authorities. You will find a listing of the various wedding requirements, arranged according to state, on our website:+ You may refer to this information as a general guideline within the United States, as well as guidelines on whom to talk to in your area for more information. You may contact the public official listed for the state of interest for confirmation of the latest requirements for ministers officiating marriage. A good way to approach this question is to call the office of the official listed and ask the following question: "I am a minister of an established church in California and plan to officiate a marriage ceremony in (STATE). Will you tell me what is required in your state (or county)?" As a follow-up question, you may ask, "Are the requirements any different for non-resident ministers than they are for residents of (STATE)?" You will find more information on this topic, as well as some good material for preparing and planning the ceremony at the following links: Wedding Laws By State: Certificates: (Marriage, Affirmation of Love and Re-newal of Marriage) Universal Textbook, and other manuals with selection of ceremony scripts and wedding sermons. The Universal Life Church of Modesto, California, is a real church. Weekly services are held in the historic church building each Sunday morning. It is very much a real church, which has been verified time and again in past legal challenges. Within the U.S., freedom of religion is absolute as it pertains to peaceful activity. There are millions of ULC ministers engaged in spiritual efforts worldwide. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof: or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. (First Amendment, U.S. Constitution) If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that NO official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein. If there are any circumstances which permit an exception, they do not now occur to us." United States Supreme Court (1943) West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, 319 US 624. Neither this Court, nor any branch of this government, will consider the merits or fallacies of a religion. Nor will the Court compare the beliefs, dogmas, and practices of a newly organized religion with those of an older, more established religion. Nor will the Court praise or condemn a religion, however excellent or fanatical or preposterous it may seem. Were the Court to do so, it would impinge on the guarantees of the First Amendment. James F. Battin, U.S. District Judge Universal Life Church vs U.S. (1974)
  13. The Universal Life Church is about religious freedom. Each person has the right and responsibility to determine what is right. Our only doctrine is "Do only that which is right." We also believe that you are already ordained, from the beginning, and that the church merely documents this ordination so that it is acceptable to the government. (John 15:16). In truth, the government has no authority to question your peaceful spiritual practices anyway, and you do not require the ordination of the Universal Life Church to be a minister. Just because someone is a minister does not mean you can trust them, regardless of what church ordains them. Ministers and priests of all faiths are regularly convicted of serious crimes. Moreover, different churches believe different things, so these ministers are telling people different things, which are in conflict with one another. If you believe someone because they are a minister, how would you reconcile the conflicting things you are told by different ministers? No regulatory power, whether created by a government or a church, will ever have any legitimate authority over those it purports to serve, other than that which comes from the individuals. As an adult individual, you are responsible for governing yourself, and as long as you do not infringe on the rights of others. If you ask to be ordained as a minister, no church should refuse you ordination. How can they? What authority do they have to deny you ordination that has already been given? You are responsible for your actions as a minister, not the church. If you make a mockery of religion, then that is your religion. I do not have to be a cheerleader for your religion. There are many people I wish would not express themselves. But I am grateful to God that they are free to make their own choices, foolish and idolatrous as they may be. Since everyone is already ordained, we are equal in matters of religion. If someone is called to serve their community as a minister, that is great, and their ministry can be evaluated by the good that they do. But regardless of how good they are as humans, they are not superior to you before God and should not be followed. They can preach, and you can listen, but evaluate what they say and reject that which does not resonate with what you know to be true in your heart. Some people who become ministers do so as a joke, or to prove a point. Interestingly enough, many of these same people find that the experience changes them and they go on to have sincere and meaningful ministries. The Universal Life Church will ordain all who ask, without cost, for life, and without question of faith. It is not the ordination, or the piece of paper, which makes someone a minister. It is their activity as a minister. How they act, what they do. It is not for we humans to judge their hearts, or the sincerity of their calling, or their ability to be effective as ministers. Many churches do this, and end up prohibiting many good and decent people from following the calling of their hearts. Some churches will not permit women to be ordained. Others require advanced "training", which can unduly effect their thinking. Most churches require ministers to adhere to the church doctrines, even when they have been convicted that the doctrine is in error. Our doctrine is not in conflict with any peaceful belief system, so it is not a problem. People can (and do) belong to our church as well as others, and many of our ministers are also ministers of other, more traditional churches. Remember, the ULC is about religious freedom, first and foremost.
  14. To obtain replacements for any of the ULC certificates which have previously been issued to you, send $1 for each certificate to cover shipping, along with your request, to: ULC Headquarters 601 Third Street Modesto CA 95351 Please provide them with your complete address, and if you have moved since the original certificates were issued, advise them of your prior address(es) as well. Be sure to state which certificates you are requesting to have replaced.
  15. Thank-you for your interest in Universal Life Church titles. Following this message is the complete listing of special titles which are currently approved and issued by the Universal Life Church. You may call yourself by any title that accurately describes the nature of your ministry, from any spiritual tradition. An officially issued title is not required. However, many people wish to have a title that has been officially issued to them by the church, with a certificate. Such titles are also recorded in the permanent records of the Universal Life Church and may be verified. If you wish to purchase an official title, you may order them online at You can use the online ordering, even if you wish to mail your order in. You will have that option at checkout. SPECIAL TITLES CURRENTLY OFFERED BY ULC Abbe Abbess Abbot Ambassador Ananda Angel Angelic Healer Angelic Minister Apostle Apostle of Humility Apostolic Reverend Archangel Archbishop Archcardinal Archdeacon Archmandrite Archpriest Archpriestess Art Missionary Ascetic Gnostic Astrotheologian Bible Historian Bishop Brahman Brother Buddhist Monk Buddhist Priest Canon Cantor Cardinal Chaplain Chief Christian Apostolic Scribe Christian Clerical Teacher Christian Financial Preceptor Cleric Colonel Counselor Curé Deacon Deaconess Dervish Director Directress Disciple Druid Druidess Elder Emissary Evangelist Evangelizing Pastoral Father Field Missionary Flying Missionary Free Thinker Friar Goddess Governor Guru Hadji Healing Minister High Priest High Priestess Imam Interfaith Minister Lama Lay Minister Lay Sister Learned Theologian Life Facilitator Litterarum Doctor Magus Martyr Matriarch Messenger Messianic Judeo-Christian Messianic Rabbi Metaphysical Teacher Metropolitan Minister Minister of Dance Minister of Music Minister of Peace Minister of Sacred Environment Minister of Sacred Light Minister of Well Being Missionary Missionary Doctor Missionary Healer Missionary of Music Missionary Priest Monk Monsignor Most Reverend Mother Superior Mystic Mystic Warrior Mystical Philosopher Nun Officiant Oracle Orthodox Monk Pagan Minister Parochial Educator Pastor Pastor General Pastoral Counselor Patriarch Peace Counselor Preacher Prebendary Preceptor Priest Priestess Professor Emeritus Prophet Prophetess Rabbi Rector Religious Preacher Revelator Reverend Reverend Father Reverend Godhi Reverend Mother Right Reverend Sadhu Sage Saint Saintly Healer Scribe Seer Shaman Shepherd Sister Soul Therapist Spiritual Counselor Spiritual Healer Spiritual Minister Spiritual Missionary Spiritual Priestess Spiritual Warrior Starets Swami Teller Thanatologist The Very Esteemed Universal Monk Universal Philosopher of Absolute Reality Universal Priest Universal Rabbi Universal Religious Philosopher Venerable Vicar Wiccan Wiccan Minister Wizard Yogi Youth Pastor
  16. The Universal Life Church is able to provide letters of good standing, and other similar documents which may be required to register with your state in order to officiate marriage. The requirements for each state are different, and the staff at ULC Headquarters is aware of what is required in each state. Because there is no charge for this service, the church is unable to provide such letters for those who don't need them for registration. It is a very labor-intensive job, as each letter must be meticulously prepared according to requirements that vary widely for each state. If your state does require such registration, contact the ULC International Headquarters office in Modesto with your request. Please make every effort to do this well in advance of the marriage date so as to avoid disappointment. Contact information for ULC International Headquarters is provided at the end of this message. The church does not charge for this service, in order to allow everyone to fully participate as a ULC minister without cost. Any voluntary donations you choose to make to help with the cost of providing this service will be sincerely appreciated. Also, please note that a few states require these letters to be notarized. The church will arrange to have the document notarized for you, however you will need to pay the $10 fee for the notary. You may contact the Headquarters office at: ULC International Headquarters 601 Third Street Modesto CA 95351 Phone: (209) 527-8111 FAX: (209) 527-8116 Email:
  17. When you open a ticket to request your ordination date (at, NOT here), please make sure your request has the following information: * Full name * Full street address where you lived when ordained * City, State and ZIP code where you lived when ordained * Full current address if different from above * Any alternate addresses you might have used when ordained * Estimated year of ordination, or range of years Please also note that you may place an order for ULC materials immediately, even if you don't know your ordination date. You may include the old address information with your order. If ordering online, you will be able to include this message in the special instructions, which you will see at checkout. We will find your ordination date for you prior to processing your order.
  18. I went back and watched the first couple of "episodes" that I found online somewhere...of course it's all subtitled, etc...but the show was kinda interesting if you're into that kind of thing.
  19. good post, Songster. I cast no blame, and in fact didn't even issue a warning for the infraction, which by all rights I could have done. I understand that these are very tough times, but I can't allow solicitations. It protects our members.
  20. yes. I made the thread invisible and sent him a message explaining that it was a violation of forum policies. He hasn't responded.
  21. Today, I celebrate 90 days without smoking. I'm not going to say that it's been easy, or that there haven't been times that I think either A) I REALLY NEED A SMOKE, or 2) you know, one cigarette wouldn't be bad.. Even with some serious rough patches, I kept to my goal and stayed off the cigarettes. It's now easier to be around others when they smoke, and still not be super tempted. Of course, I AM a little tempted. But I can hang out with my buddy for a while, when he chain smokes, and not give in and say "gimme." Today, according to my little phone application (Quit Now!) I reached the goal of "Physical Condition Improved." I am also 24.7% of the way towards Heart Disease Death Risk reduced to half. I have NOT smoked 1352 cigarettes. I have saved $443 by not buying smokes. I have saved 5 days, 15 hours, and change, in time, by not smokin. I've noticed that I don't go outside for "smoke" breaks nearly as often, when I'm working. I'm more productive. I don't need to get out of my office. I'm not so foolish to say that "I'm NEVER GONNA SMOKE AGAIN." What I can say is, "I'm not gonna smoke TODAY." Oh. And I quit the coffee. Well, mostly. I still have a cup from circle K once a week or so, but I'm not drinkin 4 cups a night anymore. It was causing anxiety attacks, for some reason. um...that's it.
  22. Not a problem. If you like, you can open a ticket at and one of our awesome customer service agents (either Kevin will gladly check our records, and the records of Modesto, to confirm your ordination date.
  23. the picture isn't bad at all. I kinda like it. I'd like more context, tho, for the story. ...well..not that there needs to be an excuse for two women to fight at a wedding...