Jewish wedding ceremonies in the state of New York can take place after the marriage license waiting period. (see below)
As the planning of your wedding day shifts into high gear, remember this most important message. Your wedding day is a reflection of your marriage. Your marriage lasts longer than your wedding day. Your wedding will be memorable because it is your wedding with your family and friends to share your day. When you have the resources, the planning can go smoothly.
Did You Know?
A New York State marriage license is valid for 60 days from the time a couple receives the license? However, a couple must wait a full 24 hours before their marriage ceremony can be performed. (Exception: active military personnel are extended to 180 days).
Marriage licenses are required by secular law. Ketubah’s are required by Jewish law.
See New York State’s “Getting Married in New York” web site for additional information. – The details are listed by The New York State Department of Health for those planning to get married in New York and New York City. New York City Marriages – Now you can Apply Online for Your Marriage License – The City of New York added this wonderful feature. To apply, and submit your Marriage Application online. You will still be required to pick up your License in person, together as a couple with proper ID. Save time at the New York City Marriage Bureau, apply online. Read the rules and policies for this simple process. Enjoy!
Did You Know?
A couple can have a Jewish Wedding ceremony any day of the week? It is the Jewish Holidays on the Jewish Calendar and Shabbat that guide a couple when a wedding should not be scheduled.
If couples decide to have a weekday Jewish Wedding, Tuesday would be the “chosen day” of the week. Tuesday is the third day of creation, and in the Torah, it is repeated twice: “and G-d saw how good it was”.
For those couples choosing to have a wedding on a Saturday would have to wait until sundown, which is when Shabbat ends. Jewish law prohibits combining a holy day with the joy and celebration of betrothal. They are to be observed individually.
Sundown times vary according to the Hebrew Calendar. As most know, in late fall the sun sets earlier and in late spring the sun sets later. Shabbat candle lighting times for the different time zones will be the best guide to when sundown begins and ends. This can be found within a Jewish Hebrew Calendar. Contact Rabbi A. Frank if you need assistance for when sundown sets on Shabbat for a Saturday evening Jewish wedding.
Will a Rabbi officiate a wedding on a Saturday?
A couple making a commitment to Judaism merely by wanting a Jewish wedding and standing under the Chuppah wedding canopy should understand the importance of Shabbat. However, today, there are Rabbis that will officiate one hour before Shabbat ends as their ‘comfort zone’ and to accommodate Saturday evening ceremonies. When contacting a Rabbi, do ask this question, but also be respectful to their observance of Shabbat.
Did you know the traditional Saturday evening Jewish wedding ceremony occurred after the cocktail hour?
It respectfully honored Shabbat and catered guests with a ‘pre-dinner nosh’. If only caterers and couples today would bring back the ole’ time traditions for the Jewish wedding ceremony time-frame dilemma on a Saturday evening. Just think how all would go so smoothly for couples and their Saturday evening wedding desire no longer be a dilemma.
The weekend wedding was originated due to many couples and their guests having weekly obligations i.e. work, school-age children, etc.
Important Elements Needed for Jewish Wedding Ceremonies
- State Marriage License
- (2) Kiddush cups (wine cups, wine goblets)1
- White wine
- A Chuppah (wedding canopy) & 4 poles 2
- Plain wedding bands (rings)4
- Both Hebrew names5
- (2) Witnesses6
- Tallit (prayer shawl)7
- Breakable wine cup wrapped in cloth – for breaking of the glass
1 Kiddush Cups (two wine cups, wine goblets) – wine is a central feature during a Jewish ceremony. Two physical bodies will elevate their relationship to the spiritual level. (Actually, 2 wine cups. One old representing your either of the bride or bridegroom’s family tree and one new for the bride and bridegroom’s union.)
2 A Chuppah – The marriage ceremony is conducted under a wedding canopy. There are two meanings for a Chuppah, the Jewish wedding canopy. The Kallah (bride) and Katan (bridegroom) standing under the Chuppah recite sacred vows to each other. Making the wedding ceremony spiritual.
It symbolizes both the new household the bride and bridegroom are forming and represents the public recognition of their new status as man and wife. The Jewish home is filled with acts of love. Read one bride touching Chuppah Story
3 Ketubah – The Jewish Marriage Contract between bridegroom and bride.
4 Wedding Rings – plain gold bands. This symbolizes the wholeness and eternity of one’s commitment to one’s spouse. (The rings should belong to the bridegroom’s family providing the marriage of that couple did not end in divorce.)
- 5 Hebrew Names – Hebrew names is a person’s link to their family tree, their heritage.
Your Hebrew name has 5 elements:
- 1. Your Hebrew name
- 2. bar/bat (son of/daughter of)
- 3. Your father’s Hebrew name
- 4. ve (and)
- 5. Your mother’s Hebrew name
6 Witnesses – 2 Jewish witnesses are needed to sign the Ketubah (cannot be an immediate family member). A cousin is acceptable. Your state marriage license witness’ do not need to be Jewish.
7 Oversized Tallit (prayer shawl) – Some Rabbis will wrap together with the bride and groom by a single tallit (prayer shawl) and offer a personal, private blessing including the priestly blessings for the wedding couple. The tallit represents the number 32, which is the number of fringes on the tallit shawl. The number 32 is the numerical value for heart in Hebrew.
View the Jewish Calendar’s Cycle of Jewish Holidays when choosing your wedding date
Ketubah – read its history and view samples