Christian Marriage Ceremony

Christian Marriage Ceremony

Pre Marriage Ceremony

The fanfare of the Christian marriage begins with the engagement party. Engagement parties usually given by the bride's family often precede the Christian marriages. The "bridal shower", an informal party is organized by the bride's family or friends and consists of only women. Similarly, the groom enjoys the bachelor party or the stage party, which is hosted by him, the ushers or a friend. It takes place just before the wedding.

The Marriage Ceremony
Tradition demands that the bridegroom reach the church first and await his bride there. The best man - usually from the bridegroom's party - greets the bride with a kiss and her wedding bouquet. The procession to the church is usually in one of these ways:

1. The Priest may greet the couple at the door of the church, bless them, and lead them in; or
2. The bride may proceed up to her waiting bridegroom at the altar on her father's arm; or
3. The bride may walk in alone to her bridegroom at the altar, preceded by first the pageboys and flower maids, the bridesmaid - best man pairs, and followed by a single bridesmaid carrying her veil.

The bridal couple kneels before the altar. While the basic celebration of the mass is as usual, there is usually a mention by the priest about the couple who intend to marry and that both of them should treat each other with love and respect. The nuptial section of the mass is well known. In the presence of two witnesses from either side, the groom and the bride declare their intention to take each other as man and wife with the famous lines "I, Y, take you, X, to be my lawfully wedded wife. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health till death do us part," with bride repeating the phrases. The best man usually carries both the rings, which are handed over to the priest who then asks the couple to put them on each other's fourth finger of the left hand. This done, he blesses the couple and declares them as man and wife. And then we have the traditional wedding kiss.

Post Marriage ceremony
After the marriage ceremony the bridal couple proceed either home or to a studio for a photographic session, or straight to the reception to celebrate their wedding.

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