You may see a lot of kissing at Greek Weddings and not just kissing between the Bride and the Groom.
The Kiss is one of the deepest symbols of love and respect that one person can offer to another. At a Greek Orthodox Wedding there are many moments throughout the ceremony in which the Priest will prompt the Bride, the Groom or the Koumbari to Kiss. However there are also many other special moments throughout the wedding in which the kiss is a cultural tradition.
Just before the Father of the Bride hands over his daughter to the Groom, the Groom will kiss the Father of the Bride’s right hand to show a sign of deep respect, honour and gratitude.
Throughout the wedding ceremony the Priest will prompt the Bride and the Groom (and sometimes the Koumbari) to kiss the Holy Gospel.
It is Greek Orthodox Tradition that after kissing the Holy Gospel, one should also kiss the hand of the Priest.
The Bride and the Groom Kiss the Stephana just before it is placed on their heads.
And the Bride and Groom also kiss the Holy Gospel during the Dance of Isaiah.
At the end of the wedding ceremony the guests all come up to the altar to offer congratulations to the Bride and Groom. Kisses on the cheek can sometimes be one kiss, two kisses or even three kisses depending on the cultural tradition of the family.
It is also a cultural tradition for the parents and grandparent of the Bride and Groom to kiss the Stephana at the end of the wedding ceremony.
And then of course, it would not be a wedding without a kiss between the Bride and the Groom. It is a western cultural influence that the Bride and the Groom kiss at the end of the ceremony. However some couples wait until they are outside of the Church before getting too romantic.
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Sia Aristidou is fascinated by the rituals and traditions celebrated in Greek culture. Sia writes about love, marriage, family and tradition and sells beautiful handmade wedding gifts at the Greek Wedding Shop.
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