wedding ceremony

WeddingCeremonies GaloreCeremonies Galoreand Much Much More . . .and Much Much More . . .

is the only reference book you will need
for creating a unique, personalized ceremony.

Wedding Ceremonies Galore and Much, Much More
is a comprehensive wedding planning book.
It contains hundreds of wedding ceremonies,
wedding vows, ring vows, children's vows and readings.

Be sure to visit our examples page for more details.

Your wedding day is as special and as individual as you are. Everything about it should reflect your uniqueness, especially your ceremony. This is the one day in your lives when you have the opportunity to publicly express your love for each other and make your own special promises and vows to each other.

Getting married is very exciting and a major event in anyone's life. In my 25 years of wedding industry experience, I have observed that most couples want their ceremony to be uniquely theirs.

I have also observed the stress that arises when they begin trying to write their ceremony. Many couples have come to me asking for help; asking what is the "right" thing for them to say in their ceremony; what readings they should use; what vows are best and so forth. The best ceremony that you can have is the one that is truly yours, yours from the heart.

We are all different and what suits you may not suit anybody else. That's the reason this book was put together, to give you choices and plenty of ideas and I do mean plenty. Benefit from my knowledge and experience; gain expertise and have the ceremony of your dreams. Stand out from the other ceremonies. Have yours so that it comes alive, with my assistance.
I personally own most wedding books ever published and what I noticed, is that most do not focus on the actual ceremony. I saw a real need to fill this gap, so I produced a book titled Wedding Ceremonies Galore and Much, Much More. This book includes a multitude of ceremonies, readings and vows plus other topics as well. The samples included in these web pages will give you an idea of what the book contains. More important than any part of your ceremony or anything that happens on your special day -- Remember to be happy and to have fun!

As a result of having fun I've recently authored another book, humourous Wedding Tales Jokes and Laughs

This book is wonderful for giving you ideas about stories to tell at your reception and also for sharing with your friends. Of course it comes with a full satisfaction guarantee.


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ll Seasons Toronto Wedding Ceremonies, conducts Toronto wedding ceremonies in the Greater Toronto Area. In addition to our Toronto wedding ceremonies we also service weddings in Mississauga, Hamilton, London and most towns and cities across Ontario. We specialize in personalized civil weddings or spiritual wedding ceremonies . Your simple yet elegant custom marriage ceremony can be at a wedding location you choose. We perform your wedding ceremony at your home, cottage, garden, hall, museum, park, restaurant, hotel, reception hall or church.

ne of our team of professional, licensed, male and female wedding officiants will meet with you to discuss and implement YOUR vision of your ceremony. We will send you a sample ceremony to work with, and you may personalize the ceremony to reflect your own style, values, and personal spirituality. Of course you may craft your own vows, and include others in the ceremony (especially children).

n addition, we will share our many wedding resources and ideas with you so that together we can build a wedding ceremony you will remember and treasure forever. From experience we know that your goal is to have a memorable and stress free wedding ceremony. Our team of selected professional wedding officiants know this, and are focused to support you, and help you and your guests experience your perfect day your way..

e invite you to browse this web site for more information and we look forward to participating in your special day. If you have immediate questions or need information and pricing on our various wedding packages, please contact us via email or phone us todayat (800) 545 3681.

or Weddings Ceremonies in Durham/York Region please visit For wedding ceremonies in Ottawa/The National Capital Region please visit For wedding ceremonies in most Maritime communities please see


The Jewish Wedding Ceremony

In traditional Jewish literature marriage is actually called kiddushin, which translates as "sanctification" or "dedication." "Sanctification," indicates that what is happening is not just a social arrangement or contractual agreement, but a spiritual bonding and the fulfillment of a mitzvah, a Divine precept. "Dedication," indicates that the couple now have an exclusive relationship, that involves total dedication of the bride and groom to each other, to the extent of them becoming, as the Kabbalists state, "one soul in two bodies."

The very first stage of a traditional Jewish marriage, is the shidduch, or matchmaking. This means that the process of finding a partner is not haphazard or based on purely external aspects. Rather, a close friend or relative of the young man or woman, who knows someone that they feel may be a compatible partner, suggests that they meet. The purpose of the meeting is for the prospective bride and groom to determine if they are indeed compatible. The meetings usually focus on discussion of issues important to marriage as well as casual conversation. The Talmud states that the couple must also be physically attractive to each other, something that can only be determined by meeting. According to Jewish law physical contact is not allowed between a man and a woman until they are married (except for certain close relatives), and also they may not be alone together in a closed room or secluded area. This helps to ensure that one's choice of partner will be based on the intellect and emotion as opposed to physical desire alone.

vort - engagement
When the families have met, and the young couple have decided to marry, the families usually announce the occasion with a small reception, known as a vort. Some families sign a contract, the tenaim, meaning "conditions," that delineates the obligations of each side regarding the wedding and a final date for the wedding. Others do this at the wedding reception an hour or so before the marriage. One week before the wedding the bride and groom, the chosson and kallah, stop seeing each other, in order to enhance the joy of their wedding through their separation.

At the reception itself, the first thing usually done is the completion, signing and witnessing of the ketuvah, or marriage contract. This contract is ordained by Mishnaic law (circa 170 CE) and according to some authorities dates back to Biblical times. The ketuvah, written in Aramaic, details the husband's obligations to his wife: food, clothing, dwelling and pleasure. It also creates a lien on all his property to pay her a sum of money and support should he divorce her, or predecease her. The document is signed by the groom and witnessed by two people, and has the standing of a legally binding agreement, that in many countries is enforceable by secular law. The ketuvah is often written as an illuminated manuscript, and becomes a work of art in itself, and many couples frame it and display it in their home.

After the signing of the ketuvah, which is usually accompanied by some light snacks and some hard liquor for the traditional lechaims (the Jewish salute when drinking, which means, "to life!"), the groom does the bedekin, or "veiling." The groom, together with his father and future father-in-law, is accompanied by musicians and the male guests to the room where the bride is receiving her guests. She sits, like a queen, on a throne-like chair surrounded by her family and friends. The groom, who has not seen her for a week (an eternity for a young couple!), covers her face with her veil. This ceremony is mainly for the legal purpose of the groom identifying the bride before the wedding.

The next stage is known as the chuppah, or "canopy." The chuppah is a decorated piece of cloth held aloft as a symbolic home for the new couple. It is usually held outside, under the stars, as a sign of the blessing given by G-d to the patriarch Abraham, that his children shall be "as the stars of the heavens." The groom is accompanied to the chuppah by his parents, and usually wears a white robe, known as a kittel, to indicate the fact that for the bride and groom, life is starting anew with a clean white slate, since they are uniting to become a new entity, without past sins. In fact, the bride and groom usually fast on the day of the wedding (until the chuppah) since for them it is like Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. While the bride comes to the chuppah with her parents, a cantor sings a selection from the Song of Songs, and the groom prays that his unmarried friends find their true partners in life.
When the bride arrives at the chuppah she circles the groom seven times with her mother and future mother-in-law, while the groom continues to pray. This symbolizes the idea of the woman being a protective, surrounding light of the household, that illuminates it with understanding and love from within and protects it from harm from the outside. The number seven parallels the seven days of creation, and symbolizes the fact that the bride and groom are about to create their own "new world" together.

Under the chuppah, an honored Rabbi or family member then recites a blessing over wine, and a blessing that praises and thanks G-d for giving us laws of sanctity and morality to preserve the sanctity of family life and of the Jewish people. The bride and groom then drink from the wine. The blessings are recited over wine, since wine is symbolic of life: it begins as grape-juice, goes through fermentation, during which it is sour, but in the end turns into a superior product that brings joy, and has a wonderful taste. The full cup of wine also symbolizes the overflowing of Divine blessing, as in the verse in Psalms, "My cup runneth over."

The groom, now takes a plain gold ring and places it on the finger of the bride, and recites in the presence of two witnesses, "Behold you are sanctified (betrothed) to me with this ring, according to the Law of Moses and Israel." The ring symbolizes the concept of the groom encompassing, protecting and providing for his wife. The ketuvah is now read aloud, usually by another honoree, after which it is given to the bride.

sheva brachos
After this, the sheva brachos, or seven blessings, are recited, either by one Rabbi, or at many weddings a different blessing is given to various people the families wish to honor. The blessings are also recited over a full cup of wine. The blessings begin with praising G-d for His creation in general and creation of the human being and proceed with praise for the creation of the human as a "two part creature," woman and man. The blessings express the hope that the new couple will rejoice together forever as though they are the original couple, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The blessings also include a prayer that Jerusalem will be fully rebuilt and restored with the Temple in its midst and the Jewish people within her gates.
At this point the couple again share in drinking the cup of wine, and the groom breaks a glass by stamping on it. This custom dates back to Talmudic times, and symbolizes the idea of our keeping Jerusalem and Israel in our minds even at times of our joy. Just as the Temple in Jerusalem is destroyed, so we break a utensil to show our identification with the sorrow of Jewish exile. The verse, "If I forget thee O' Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its cunning: If I do not raise thee over my own joy, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth", is sometimes recited at this point. With the breaking of the glass the band plays, and the guests usually break out into dancing and cries of "Mazaltov! Mazaltov!" (Some say, tongue in cheek, that this moment symbolizes the last time the groom gets to "put his foot down")

cheder yichud
Now that the couple are married they are accompanied by dancing guests to the cheder yichud, "the room of privacy." They may now be alone in a closed room together, an intimacy reserved only for a married couple. In fact, according to many Jewish legal authorities, the very fact that they are alone together in a locked room, is a requirement of the legal act of marriage, and hence their entry into the room must be observed by the two witnesses of the marriage.

While the bride and groom are alone together (usually eating, after having fasted all day) the guests sit down to eat a festive meal. The meal is preceded by ritual washing of the hands, and the blessing over bread. At some point, the band announces the arrival "for the very first time, Mr. and Mrs. _____!!!" and everyone joins in dancing around the bride and groom. The dancing, in accordance with Jewish law requires a separation between men and women for reasons of modesty, and hence there is a mechitzah, or partition between the men and women. The main focus of the dancing is to entertain and enhance the joy of the newlyweds, hence large circles are formed around the "king and queen," and different guests often perform in front of the seated couple. It is not unusual to see jugglers, fire eaters, and acrobats at a wedding (most of whom are guests, not professionals!) The meal ends with the Birchas Hamazon, Grace After Meals, and again the seven blessings are recited over wine, shared afterwards by the bride and groom.


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The Wedding Ceremony

There is no end to the number and types of wedding ceremonies. Some are steeped in tradition. Others are as new as new age. Taking into consideration your faith, denomination, and the requirements of the governing body and/or the minister or official who is going to perform the ceremony, you must determine how much leeway you will be given in modifying traditional vows or whether or not you will be given the opportunity of creating your own ceremony and/or vows.

The elements of a wedding ceremony are somewhat universal although they may be embellished and their chronology be modified from ceremony to ceremony. Here are some of the major elements:

1) The Greeting
2) The Declaration of Intentions (Wedding Vows)
3) The Exchange of Rings
4) Blessings and Readings, and
5) The Pronouncement

Outrigger Reef invites couples to Hoi Hou Ke Aloha -- fall in love all over again -- at a complimentary wedding vow renewal ceremony held every Friday morning at 8 am, as the sun rises over the beach at Waikiki.

The non-denominational Hawaiian ceremony is conducted by a practicing kahu (priest). The kahu welcomes couples with a traditional Hawaiian chant, then leads them to the water's edge to be honored with a graceful hula and serenaded with Hawaiian song. They are blessed with a gentle sprinkling of sea water before reciting their vows. The ceremony concludes with the beautiful Hawaiian Wedding Song performed with a hula. Couples are presented with a certificate of the ceremony that features a Hawaiian floral lei symbolizing the circle of love that has no end.

The vow renewal ceremony is open to all -- newlyweds or those celebrating an anniversary. Friends and family members are invited to gather around and share in the celebration.

This is truly an experience to treasure! Fall in love all over again on the beach at Waikiki amidst the beauty the islands and a blessing of Aloha!



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Wedding ceremony music, also known as nuptial music, consists of classical selections whose moods and tempos are suited for the traditional wedding ceremony. Many of these pieces, such as the Wedding Marches by both Wagner and Mendelssohn, are synonymous with the wedding ceremony.

This, however, does not mean that other classical music cannot be substituted for certain nuptial selections. Your musicians are more likely to know a nuptial selection and your guests are more likely to recognize and associate it with a wedding ceremony. A suitable non-nuptial selection may, however, create a lasting impression with your guests. Don't be afraid to ask your musicians about a non-nuptial classical selection. Some are more than happy to increase their repertoire.

For a religious ceremony, you should first check with your clergy to find the limitations on material and instrumentation, if any. Proceedings go much more smoothly for you, your music providers, and your clergy when these guidelines are followed.

If you want a non-nuptial selection, remember to consult your music provider. An experienced provider can tell you if the piece is suitable for a certain part of the ceremony.

In order to help you view and audition selections more efficiently, some sites have been linked at locationsother than the top of the site's home page. Please take time out to view these valuable sites in their entirety. Links totheir home pages can be found in the Other Sites section or elsewhere on this page.

Selection Lists