Life Cycle Events - WEDDINGS 

Who should be contacted to arrange a wedding?
Consult the Rabbi before making arrangements with your caterer. It is very important to clear the date. If the Rabbi is unavailable, he will refer you to the Cantor.

May another Rabbi take part in the ceremony at our temple?
If you wish for another rabbi to participate in the ceremony, please first consult with our Rabbi.

If both the Rabbi and the Cantor are unavailable, can another rabbi perform the ceremony in our temple?
Yes, with the permission of the Rabbi.

Should there be a pre-marital conference with the Rabbi?
Yes, the Rabbi requires at least three meetings with the engaged couple prior to the wedding.

What is an Aufruf?
At Temple Beth Rishon, this special ceremony is held during the Shabbat morning services or Friday evening services prior to a wedding. During this ceremony, the engaged couple is called to the Torah for an aliyah. Afterwards, the congregation may shower them with marshmallows to convey their good wishes for a sweet and fulfilling marriage. Please consult with the Rabbi regarding the scheduling of the ceremony.

What are the requirements for a Jewish wedding?
A Jewish wedding has two requirements: first, both parties must voluntarily enter the marriage; second, their marriage must be accompanied by a ketubah.

What is a ketubah?
The term ketubah, which comes from a Hebrew verb that means “to write,” refers to the traditional marriage document in use since rabbinical times. It is the signed marriage contract that is read during the wedding ceremony. Those who wish to buy a more elaborate ketubah should do so well in advance of the wedding. Our temple gift shop has an excellent selection.

Is there a set tradition regarding the processional?
This is entirely up to the couple. The following is a traditional processional: Rabbi, Cantor, bride’s grandparents, groom’s grandparents, ushers, best man, groom’s father, groom and groom’s mother, bridesmaids, maid/matron of honor, bride’s father, bride, and bride’s mother.

What is a chupah?
It is the canopy under which the wedding ceremony takes place. According to one interpretation, it represents the home that the bride and groom will establish together. If you choose to have your wedding ceremony at Temple Beth Rishon, we have a chupah available for your use which was donated by our Cantor's mother-in-law. A florist, caterer, or party planner can also be of assistance in providing a chupah of your choice for the ceremony.

What occurs during the wedding ceremony?
The following is a brief description of a typical wedding ceremony: once the bride and groom are under the chupah, the Rabbi or Cantor recites the first two blessings. The couple exchange rings and recite a vow of sanctification to each other. The Rabbi or Cantor reads the marriage contract aloud. The seven marriage blessings (Sheva Berachot) that consecrate a Jewish wedding are recited. The ceremony concludes with the smashing of the wine glass under the groom’s foot.

What type of music should be used during the ceremony?
This is at the discretion of the couple being married. However, Israeli and Jewish music are recommended. The Rabbi or Cantor can be of assistance with the selection of music.

When can a wedding take place?
A wedding can take place any time with the following exceptions: Shabbat, festivals, and fast days (eg, Yom Kippur, Tish Be’Av (the ninth day of Av).

How are arrangements made for flowers?
The family contacts a florist of their choice.

Are photographers and videotaping permitted?
Yes. However, no flash is allowed during the ceremony. Photography and videotaping must be performed at a distance so as not to disturb the ceremony.

How many people can be seated in the sanctuary?
The sanctuary seats 365 people.

What is the Clergy's fee for performing the wedding ceremony?
There is no fee for temple members. Gifts to the Rabbi or Cantor are at the discretion of the family.  Non-members should consult the Rabbi or Cantor about his fee.

What are the charges for the use of the sanctuary and the social hall?
Please refer to the Facilities and Catering page of our website for basic pricing and contact information.

Should the Rabbi or Cantor be consulted before a remarriage?
Yes, a member of our clergy must be consulted because all questions of religious law that arise should be
dealt with as early as possible.