Noahide Wedding Ceremony
Well in advance of the wedding, the female guests can be requested to dress in appropriate clothing, according to the Noahide community’s standards of modesty. This could be done with a note inserted into the wedding invitation.
The wedding ceremony takes place under a traditional canopy with four posts, which is called a chuppah, as a symbol of the home to be built and shared by the couple. Even before the Flood, couples were married under a chuppah, beginning with Adam and Eve. It is open on all sides, just as Abraham and Sarah had their tent open on all sides to welcome guests from every direction with amazing hospitality, in order to teach others about the One True G-d.
In the processional, which may be accompanied by music, first the groom proceeds to the chuppah. Then the mothers (if present and participating) proceed with the bride from a back room or back area to the chuppah and circle the groom one time. This symbolizes the idea of the woman being a protective, surrounding light of the household, that illuminates it with understanding and love from within and protects it from harm from the outside.
The bride and groom together light 7 candles (preferably all of different colors), symbolizing the Seven Noahide Commandments, and then say this paragraph and list of 7 Divine attributes:
The seven colors of the rainbow symbolize G-d’s covenant with all of mankind. As we light each candle we remember our commit-ment to the Seven Commandments for the nations, that G-d gave to Noah and He later repeated to Moses at Mount Sinai. We also call to mind the Seven Attributes of G-d that are reflected in the powers of our own souls:
Do not Commit Sexual Transgressions; the attribute of Kindness Do not Murder; the attribute of Judgment and Restraint Do not Steal; the attribute of Beauty and Mercy Do not Worship Idols; the attribute of Eternity Do not Blaspheme; the attribute of Splendor and Humility Do not Eat Flesh Taken from a Living Animal; the attribute of Foundation and Connection Establish Courts of Law; the attribute of Kingship
A reading on the Torah-based concept of marriage may be read in parts by one or more persons whom the bride and groom wish to honor – for example brothers, sisters, parents, or close friends, etc.
A chosen person reads the Noahide marriage contract to those present, detailing the groom’s and bride’s obligations to one another (The Divine Code, 2nd Edition, p. 515).
By the Grace of G-d
On the ___ day of the week, the ___ day of the month of _________ in the year 20′__ in the civil calendar, corresponding to the ___ day of the Hebrew month of ____________ in the year 57__ since Creation according to the calendar of the People of Israel, here in the community of [city, state/province, and nation:]_________________ , the bridegroom, __________________ , said to the bride, __________________ : “Be my wife according to the laws of the Torah of Moses as they relate to Bnei Noah, the Children of Noah. I pledge to respect, honor and maintain you conscientiously and in honorable fashion as becoming ethical and honorable people, and assume all the responsibilities incumbent upon a loving and faithful husband, living with you as husband and wife according to universal custom and providing you with all necessities of life.”
Miss _______________ agreed to become his wife, and pledges to honor and respect her husband and to assume all the responsibilities incumbent upon a loving and faithful wife, living with him as wife and husband according to universal custom and maintaining a harmonious household.
Mr. ______________, our bridegroom made this declaration: “I accept upon myself all moral, emotional and financial obligations of this marriage contract. I also accept upon myself to provide all necessities of life for any children G-d may bless us with at least until their age of secular majority or marriage. I declare and affirm that all my present and future properties and possessions shall be liable to these undertakings during my lifetime, and after my lifetime, from this day and forever. If a question arises regarding practical fulfillment of these obligations that I have accepted, my intent is follow decisions of a Jewish Orthodox rabbinical court that will rule according to the Torah Laws for Bnei Noah.
The obligations of this marriage contract were accepted by Mr. _____________, our bridegroom, and Miss _____________, according to all the strictest usage of all marriage contracts according to the prevailing civil laws and social norms.
A binding acceptance of this contract by Mr. _____________, the bridegroom, and Miss _____________, his bride, regarding everything written and stated above, is made by both, by affixing their signatures to this document before witnesses:
Mr. ______________________________ Miss ______________________________
Affirmed and signed on the above date before:
Giving a ring is traditional in most cultures. By accepting a ring from the groom, the bride shows her formal consent to become the groom’s wife. A ring is round, to symbolize an endless relationship of love and commitment.
The groom may now break a glass wrapped in cloth by stomping on it. This act serves as an expression of sadness over the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which the Hebrew Bible calls a House of Prayer for all nations. Even at the moment of greatest rejoicing, we are always mindful of the Bible's instructions to remember Jerusalem the Holy City, and to look forward to the eternal Third Holy Temple that will be established when the true Messiah comes, speedily in our days.
“MAZAL TOV – Congratulations!”
After the ceremony, since they are in public, the bride and groom should maintain modest behavior with each other, in terms of kissing, etc. Refreshments might be served while the bride and groom have their pictures taken together, along with family members.
A convenient place is made available for handwashing before the wedding meal. If bread is served, the blessing over bread is recited at the start of the meal: [for example] "Blessed are You, L-rd our G-d, King of the universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth."
(If any Jews will join the meal, an option for kosher food should be available for them. This can be planned by consulting with an Orthodox Rabbi. The minimum option for kosher food would be uncut fresh fruit. Kosher food meals that are certified kosher and double-wrapped and double-sealed can be ordered in advance.)
The “Grace After Meals” for Noahides is recited at the end of the meal (see The Divine Code, 2nd Ed., p. 101), and additional (optional) prayers may be added at the end.
Charity cans may be placed on each table during the meal and/or in the wedding reception rooms to encourage the guests to give charity. When disbursed appropriately, this will add merit and blessings for the bride and groom from the outset of their new marriage.
Full Wedding Ceremony
Provided by Ask Noah International in Collaboration with the Noahide Acשdemy. Approved by: Rabbi J. Immanuel Schochet and Rabbi Moshe Weiner
You may download here (pdf format) the Noahide Ketouba (Wedding Certificate) - Courtesy of the Noahide Academy of Jerusalem.