A wed­ding is a church cer­e­mo­ny of mar­riage that has a long his­to­ry and plays an impor­tant role for believ­ing cou­ples. If the reg­istry office solemn­ly unites your names on paper called “Mar­riage Cer­tifi­cate”, then the church unites your souls before the face of the Lord. If you are reli­gious enough, or extreme­ly sen­ti­men­tal, the wed­ding cer­e­mo­ny will strength­en and enno­ble your union.

Chan­fash­ion pre­pared for you an arti­cle about the rules and laws of this beau­ti­ful church sacra­ment.

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General rules and requirements of the wedding

1 Both the groom and the bride must belong to the Chris­t­ian Ortho­dox faith.

2 New­ly­weds should not be relat­ed to the fourth gen­er­a­tion.

3 You can get mar­ried no more than 3 times.

4 Before going to church, reg­is­ter the mar­riage offi­cial­ly, at the reg­istry office.

Our advice: do not car­ry out paint­ing and wed­ding on the same day (it is hard both phys­i­cal­ly and men­tal­ly)

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5 If you are not yet 18 years old, you, alas, will not be mar­ried.

6 The per­mis­sion and bless­ing of your par­ents for the wed­ding is required.

7 If the bride is preg­nant, it is imper­a­tive to tell the priest about this at com­mu­nion.

8 Wit­ness­es must be bap­tized, not divorced or wid­owed.

9 New­ly­weds must be absolute­ly free from any oth­er mar­i­tal oblig­a­tions.

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You can only get mar­ried on cer­tain days. So, it is cat­e­gor­i­cal­ly impos­si­ble to car­ry out the cer­e­mo­ny on Sat­ur­day, on tem­ple and reli­gious hol­i­days.

How to prepare for a wedding

Each tem­ple has its own rules, so con­sult with the priest what prepa­ra­tions for the wed­ding cer­e­mo­ny should be for you. The gen­er­al require­ments include the oblig­a­tory com­mu­nion of the young and a sev­en-day fast (before which it is advis­able to con­fess).

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Pre­pare a tow­el, can­dles and red wine. Every­thing can be pur­chased right in the tem­ple, but if you want a spe­cial, beau­ti­ful tow­el, take a look at our Cat­a­log, there are hand­made acces­sories and crafts­men ready to make a tow­el for you to order.

Par­ents can offer icons for bless­ing.

Rings, accord­ing to Chris­t­ian canons, should be dif­fer­ent for the bride and groom: she has gold, he has sil­ver. True, priests are not cat­e­gor­i­cal and often allow new­ly­weds to use wed­ding rings at the wed­ding.

Before the cer­e­mo­ny, you will be asked for a mar­riage cer­tifi­cate — take it with you.

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What you need to know about the rite itself

A trouser suit is not allowed in the bride’s attire, and if the mod­el of your wed­ding dress expos­es your shoul­ders and back, you will need a cape.

It is bet­ter to choose shoes for vis­it­ing the church at low speed — the wed­ding cer­e­mo­ny is long — up to 1.5 hours.

Mod­esty, mod­esty and once again mod­esty — this is the main prin­ci­ple in the make-up and hair­style of the bride. No bright cos­met­ics and lip­stick, a high hair­style is use­less — you will try, and the scarf will cov­er it, and the crown will look ugly.

The only require­ment for the groom is not to show tat­toos and pierc­ings and to remove long hair, if any.

It is desir­able that all those present at the cer­e­mo­ny have pec­toral cross­es, and women have their heads cov­ered.

Mobile phones are turned off dur­ing the wed­ding cer­e­mo­ny!

Pos­ing in the church is strict­ly pro­hib­it­ed!

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Get per­mis­sion in advance to take pho­tos and videos. Most church­es charge a fee.

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How is the wedding ceremony

Even before the wed­ding cou­ple arrive, every­thing needs to be pre­pared in the tem­ple: put can­dles and then light them, bring rings and give them to the cler­gy­man, lay a white tow­el on which the new­ly­weds will stand. Have one of your brides­maids or the groom’s wit­ness do this work.

Young peo­ple come to church togeth­er (although in the old days the groom was wait­ing for the bride on the thresh­old of the church) in advance, 20–30 min­utes before the wed­ding. This is nec­es­sary so that you tune in to the right mood, feel the spir­it of the sacred and the spe­cial atmos­phere of the church envi­ron­ment.

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The wedding consists of several stages:

Stage 1. The new­ly­weds enter the tem­ple accom­pa­nied by a dea­con (the bride to the left of the groom) and stand on a fes­tive tow­el. The priest comes out, bless­es them three times and hands them wed­ding can­dles. The new­ly­weds are bap­tized three times after each bless­ing.

Stage 2. Prayers are heard in which, turn­ing to God, the dea­con asks for bless­ings for the new­ly­weds.

Stage 3. The priest brings out rings on a spe­cial tray: on the left — for the bride, and on the right — for the groom. The cou­ple exchange rings three times.

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Stage 4. The young peo­ple go to the cen­ter of the church, fol­low­ing the priest, who asks those who are get­ting mar­ried: did they come to the tem­ple and get mar­ried out of their own will. Turn­ing to those present, he asks if any­one has any rea­son not to want this union.

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Stage 5 The dea­con reads the prayers again. After this, the bride and groom are dressed in crowns (wit­ness­es hold them over the heads of the new­ly­weds).

Stage 6 They take out a ves­sel with wine and the spous­es drink it three times ( in small sips). But you need to drink to the bot­tom.

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Stage 7. The priest joins the hands of the new­ly­weds and cir­cles them three times around the lectern.

Stage 8. The cou­ple approach the Roy­al Doors, kiss the cross and icons (the icons are tak­en home after the cer­e­mo­ny). Batiush­ka says part­ing words and… the wed­ding is over!

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Tip: hold­ing a bou­quet for the bride dur­ing the cer­e­mo­ny will be incon­ve­nient, so you can give it to a girl­friend for a while or not take it to church at all.

Walk­ing to the altar, you must remem­ber that this is not just an amaz­ing cer­e­mo­ny, but a very seri­ous and respon­si­ble step. A wed­ding is the bless­ing of the Lord and your joint desire to live accord­ing to his laws.