This ceremony takes place immediately after the signing of the The Jewish wedding contract. Traditionally, the ketubah protected the wife in marriage by spelling out the husband's obligations to her and guaranteeing her a financial settlement in case of divorce. Throughout the ages, ketubot (plural) have been illuminated and calligraphed, becoming significant as Jewish art. Today, all manner of egalitarian ketubot are written. Some dispense with the financial and legal aspects, focusing more on the emotional and spiritual sides of the relationship. Others maintain the rabbis' concern with the practical, but define mutual obligations for each spouse. and wedding license, and helps the couple, and their close family, to refocus upon the meaning of the moments they are about to live.
This setup assumes a heterosexual marriage but it can certainly be adapted. The bride and groom stand back to back, with their parents facing them on either side (and/or appropriate family members). First the bride’s family blesses her with the blessing of The second Jewish matriarch, Isaac's wife, and mother to Jacob and Esau. Rebecca is an active parent, talking to God when she is pregnant and learning the fate of her children, then ultimately manipulating Isaac and the children to ensure Jacob's ascendancy. Her Hebrew name is Rivka., and then the groom’s family blesses him. They then continue with the y’A happy occasion. Usually describes a celebration for a life cycle event (birth, wedding, etc.)., and then we go back to the bride for her y’simekh.
The form of the final blessing is Marcia Falk’s, from her Book of Blessings.
Bride’s parents/ family:
אֲחוֹתֵינוּ אַת הֱיִי לְאַלְפֵי רְבָבָה
A’khoteynu at hey’yi l’alfey r’vavah.
Our sister, may you grow into myriads of thousands!
אָחִינוּ אַתָּה הֱיֵה לְאַלְפֵי רְבָבָה
Akhinu atah hey’yey l’alfey e’vavah.
Our brother, may you grow into myriads of thousands!
יְשִׂימְךָ כְּאֶפְרַיִם וּמְנַשֶּׁה
Y’shimkha k’efraim oom’nashe.
May God make you like Efrayim and Menashe—these two sons of Jacob's eldest son by his beloved wife, Rachel. Joseph, the dreamer, was his father's favorite and nearly murdered by his brothers. Sold into slavery, he became viceroy of Egypt where he ultimately saves the Egyptians and also his own family from starvation. His Hebrew name is Yosef/, the first Jews to be born and raised in exile, yet found their place with their brothers as builders of the House of Lit. ''the one who struggles with God.'' Israel means many things. It is first used with reference to Jacob, whose name is changed to Israel (Genesis 32:29), the one who struggles with God. Jacob's children, the Jewish people, become B'nai Israel, the children of Israel. The name also refers to the land of Israel and the State of Israel.. Wherever you wander, may you find your strength in the journey you share with the people of Israel.
יְשִׂימֵךְ כְּרָחֵל לֵאָה וּמִרְיָם
Y’simekh k’rakhel The third of the Jewish matriarchs, Lead is the eldest of Lavan's daughters and one of the wives of Jacob. She is the daughter whom Lavan tricks Jacob into marrying instead of his younger daughter Rachel, whom Jacob has requested to marry. Leah is mother to six of the the twelve tribes and to one daughter, Dinah. oo’Miriam is the sister of Moses and Aaron. As Moses' and Aaron's sister she, according to midrash, prophesies Moses' role and helps secure it by watching over the young baby, seeing to it that Pharaoh's daughter takes him and that the baby is returned to his mother for nursing. During the Israelites' trek through the desert, a magical well given on her behalf travels with the Israelites, providing water, healing, and sustenance..
May God make you like Rahel, Leah, and Miriam is the sister of Moses and Aaron. As Moses' and Aaron's sister she, according to midrash, prophesies Moses' role and helps secure it by watching over the young baby, seeing to it that Pharaoh's daughter takes him and that the baby is returned to his mother for nursing. During the Israelites' trek through the desert, a magical well given on her behalf travels with the Israelites, providing water, healing, and sustenance.. May you be like these sisters, mothers, and companions who brought light to the tent, brought us to a fuller envisioning of the many manifestations of God’s presence in our midst, and taught us to dance.
The two families are now invited to share a few moments speaking privately and quietly with their offspring/family member who is about to A writ of divorce. Traditionally, only a man can grant his wife a get. Liberal Jews have amended this tradition, making divorce more egalitarian. married. When they are finished, the bride and groom turn to face each other, and are invited to take each other’s hands. The rabbi points out that this is the moment when the parents literally send their children forth from their family of origin so that they make make their own family. All they have tried to teach and all their love goes with these adult children who will soon commit their lives to each other beneath the Marriage canopy symbolizing the couple's new home..
When you next behold each other’s faces, it will be beneath the huppah, the symbol of the home you now begin to build. In that creative act of love may you always build each other, and yourselves, and may you always see each other’s faces the reflection of God’s presence.
[If there is a veil, it is lowered now.]
Rabbi concludes with final blessing:
תִּהְיוּ אֲשֶׁר תִּהְיוּ וְתִהְיוּ בְּרוּכִים בְּכָל אֲשֶׁר תִּהְיוּ
Ti’h’yu asher ti’h’yu v’ti’h’yu b’rukhim b’khol asher ti’h’yu.
Be who you are, and may you be blessed in all that you will be.
[Procession to huppah immediately follows]