AufrufIn many jewish communities it is customary in the synagogue on the Shabbat before the wedding, to give the groom an Aliyah and that afterwards sweets are thrown and in some places Mazel-Tov and Siman-Tov is sung. In non-orthodox communities the couple may be called up and the rabbi may in addition give them a special blessing.
MikvehIt is customary for the bride to visit a ritual bath known as a mikveh, just prior to getting married.
FastingIn some communities it is customary for the couple to fast on the day of their wedding, until after their ceremony. This should be done with caution to avoid either of them fainting, or feeling unwell during the ceremony.
BadekenBefore the wedding begins some grooms along with the rabbi, or the bride’s father will go to the bride’s room and lower her veil. This is a reminder of the story of Jacob first marriage to Leah rather than to Rachel.
Ketubah SigningSome rabbis arrange for the witnesses to sign the ketubah before the ceremony, as they feel that doing so during the ceremony spoils the flow of the occasion. However, in such cases the document is not handed over to the bride until after it has been read out. Other rabbis believe that the witnesses can not do so until they have seen and heard the groom say the traditional phrase as he gives the bride a ring, or other object of value. In these cases the ketubah is signed during, or after the ceremony.
ModestyAt some traditional orthodox weddings, there will be an expectation that women will dress modestly. Although there is some discretion as to what this can mean, it usually includes no bare shoulders, no short skirts, no décolletage, etc. If in doubt, it is better to contact and ask whoever sent the invitation for advice. Men and women may be required to sit away from each other during the ceremony and in very traditional circles, they may be separated at other times, such as during the dancing.
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