When Strangers Become Family
– Featured In: U.S. News and World Report
Ultimately, the changes that will strengthen stepfamilies will likely come from shifts in cultural prejudices. Such change is slow, but there are some signs that some preliminary movement along this line is starting to take place. For instance, Roger Coleman, a clergyman in Kansas City, MO, performs marriage ceremonies specifically designed to include children when a parent remarries. In years of officiating second marriages, he says, he became acutely aware of the confusion and insecurities of the children, and the ceremony--which includes a special medallion worn by the child--aims to celebrate the "new family" and move the church beyond mere condemnation of divorce. This year, Coleman says, over 10,000 families across the country will use the medallion in their remarriage ceremony.