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Mormons Making Wedding Rule Change To Be More Inclusive

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is changing wedding rules in hopes of preventing family members who aren't church members from feeling excluded.

The faith said Monday in a news release that couples who get married in civil ceremonies will no longer have to wait one year to do a temple wedding ceremony that only members in good standing can attend.

Church leaders say it will allow "families to come together in love and unity," but doesn't lessen the temple ceremony the faith believes seals the couple for eternity.

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Religious scholar Matthew Bowman says the old rule was designed to encourage couples to get married in a temple and have a reception or "ring ceremony" afterward. But, he says it caused heartache for some with mixed religious affiliations.