Traditional jewish wedding ceremony explaining what is unterfuhrers, chuppah, ketubah and synagogue marriages.

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Wedding Etiquette Tips 32


Traditional Jewish Wedding Ceremony
Jewish marriages are both civil and religious ceremony, both requirements must be satisfied before the synagogue marriage can be materialized.

3 months before the wedding, the couple has to make a visit to the register office.

21 days later, they will be issued the marriage certificate.

The marriage certificate must be sent to the authority that authorized synagogue marriages.

If the wedding couple wish to marry under the Chief Rabbi, they must then attend the Marriage Authorisation Office through the Jewish Marriage Council. The attendance is a must and it normally last for 4 months. On the Sabbath prior to the wedding, the groom will be notified to the Reading of the Law in the synagogue.

On the wedding day, the bridegroom will be arriving first and sits at the place of honour. His place is allocated with the wardens of the synagogue, best man, his father and his father-in-law. The bridegroom will seat under a chuppah (wedding canopy) and the best man stands behind him with the main purpose of handing the wedding ring to him.

The bride is then brought in by her father and mother. Or the bride can also be brought in by her mother and the bridegroom’s mother. Following will be the unterfuhrers or bridesmaids. Then the unterfuhrers who attends to the bride and groom will stand beneath the chuppah. Before the bride comes under the chuppah, the bridegroom is requested by the minister to accept the terms and conditions of the ketubah which mainly consists of obligations to his wife and signed by witnesses on the ketubah.

Right after that , the bride stands under the chuppah at the bridegroom’s right side. The minister may wish to give his own additional blessings or prayer, or even some spiritual guidance to the wedding couple. Now the wedding ceremony kicks off with a welcome chant, and recite blessings of bethrothal over a cup of wine; the wine will be blessed and praises for God for the commandment to marry.

There is of great significant value of the wedding ring itself in Jewish Law, when the Bridegroom puts the wedding ring in the Bride’s finger, they are legally bound. The groom will thus declare, “Behold thou art consecrated unto me by this ring according to the Law of Moses and of Israel”. The bride agrees to the marriage by accepting the wedding ring on her finger.

Hence this act of marriage, the gesture signifies that the bride and groom marries themselves and not the minister that marries them,

the minister’s presence is to uphold and act as a Jewish Law Expert and witness the ketubah.

Since the wedding ring holds such great significance, the groom has to buy the ring himself, personally, the wedding ring has to be round and made of precious metal without any jewels. The reason for the wedding ring to be made without any jewels is because it signifies a non-discrimination of rich and poor. The Bride should not wear any jewelry and the wedding ring will be worn on the Bride’s right index finger. The reason for the wedding ring to be placed on the index finger is because traditionally this finger is a symbol used to acquire things, part of a traditional jewish wedding ceremony.


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