German Wedding Ceremony


 bouquet of heirloom roses for a German wedding ceremony A gorgeous bouquet of heirloom roses for a German wedding ceremony. Photo courtesy of Pexels.

 

A German wedding ceremony begins before the couple arrives at the church. While the bride prepares for the day, the groom arrives at her home. Expecting to find his blushing bride, he may be astonished when a burly man dressed in white opens the door.

 

Making Deals

Once he makes a deal with the faux bride, he may enter the house to find an array of brides. Which one is his? He must approach each one and strike a deal until he finds his true bride.

Once he finds her, he better hold on tight. It's time to ride together to the church. In centuries past, the bride and groom led a grand procession of guests to the church.

Along the way, they might encounter road blocks devised by the young men of their village. To remove the chains or ropes from the path, the groom had to pay a toll to the young men.

While uproarious and fun, these antics may have been borne out of superstition. Traditional folklore led to worry that the bride might be sought by evil spirits. In order to ward them off, her family and friends hid her to try to fool the spirits.

 

A German Wedding Ceremony

In Germany, a couple must wed at the registry several days before commencing with a church wedding. Given that, the bride and groom proceeded down the aisle together.

In yet another effort to ward off evil spirits, the couple walked as closely together as possible to keep anything from coming between them. They stand at the altar alone, without any attendants and without the American custom of giving away the bride.

Having chosen the music and a verse of Scripture ahead of time, their preferences are incorporated into a long religious ritual. A German wedding ceremony includes songs, a sermon given by a pastor or priest, and communion.

 

More Antics

During communion, the couple typically kneels. Appearing most chivalrous, the groom allows his bride to kneel first. Then he makes a big show of kneeling after her, making sure to pin her dress down with one of his knees. In this way, he ensures he will "wear the pants" in the relationship.

Not to be outdone, the bride makes sure that she steps on the groom's foot as they stand. This gives her the upper hand in the relationship.

After the pronouncement of their betrothal, the couple greets their guests one by one. As they go, the bride cuts portions of the long white ribbon tied to her bouquet. Each guest receives a piece to tie to the antenna of his or her car.

Upon arriving at the exit doors, the bride and groom may find their way blocked. This time, by ribbons strung across the doorway. In order to pass, the bride and groom must promise a fabulous party for all who wish to attend.

As well-wishers shower them with confetti or rice, the bride and groom step into a car elaborately decorated with flowers and ribbons. The guests follow behind the wedding car, white ribbons flapping in the wind, heading to the reception.