The Ring

What Does a Jewish Wedding Entail?

What Does a Jewish Wedding Entail?

A typical Jewish bridal service is full of purposeful rituals that usually exemplify the allure of the relationship between a man and his wife, as well as their obligations to the Jewish people and to each other. The following are some of the Jewish wedding heritage.

  • This happens on the wedding day which is designed as a day of absolution. This makes some couples to fast on their special day just like they would fast on the Day of Atonement. The abstinence normally lasts until the end of the ceremony after which they have their first meal together as man and wife.
  • This is where the groom approaches the bride for veiling before the wedding service begins. He takes a look at her and then veils her face implying that his love for her inner beauty is boundless. This practice emanates from the Bible where Jacob was misled into marrying the sister of the lady he loved using a veil.
  • Ketubah signing follows next. This is a Jewish prenuptial contract that summarizes both the bride's and the chatan's obligations where he is supposed to provide food, shelter, and clothing to his wife while also being attentive to her needs emotionally. There are usually two witnesses who are present as Ketubah is signed by the two couples.
  • The walk and vows under the Chuppah. The Chatan's (groom) folks walk him down the aisle to the Chuppah where the couple exchanges their vows after which the folks of the kallah (bride) follow suit.
  • Immediately the couple enters the Chuppah, the bride circles the groom seven times depicting the seven days of creation and the seven wedding blessings. A couple may choose to circle each other to make the old-age ritual complementary.
  • Breaking the glass. As the wedding service concludes, the groom is welcomed to step on a glass that is usually inside a cloth bag to shatter it. This serves as a statement of anguish at the devastation of the Temple in Jerusalem and also as a portrayal of the brittleness of human relationships. It also serves as a reminder that marriages forever change our lives.
  • Mazel Tov. After the glass is broken by the groom, the next step is to shout Mazel tov! This is one of the most popular of Jewish wedding customs where the guests or the congregation shout and cheer "Mazel tov!" Wishing the couple a great destiny and future.
  • After that, the couple spends about 20 minutes in solitude (Yichud). This Jewish bridal ritual enables the newlyweds to think about their new relationship and also allows them to time to revel and to bond.
  • The seudah. This is the celebratory meal that is made for the guests to bring joy to the groom and the bride on their special day. As the guests eat up their meal, music is played, and people dance with the newlyweds. In instances where the bride and the groom are walking down the aisle for the second time, Sheva Berachot is recited only on the wedding night.