Rituals in Christian Weddings

Rituals: a Christian Wedding
People have always used rituals in their daily lives.   They provide a sense of consistency and comfort to those participating. Many of these rituals or events act as models of every day life. Turner, Geertz, and Myerhoff all agree that these models help one to understand a certain aspect in their life, especially if a major change has occurred.   Weddings are a ritual that do just that.   Being Christian, these are the only type of weddings that I have viewed.   This ceremony puts those participating in a heightened state to make them more open to receiving messages, and like most other rituals draw on condensing symbols and binary oppositions to act as a model for life.
To understand how a wedding accomplishes all of these, one must first understand how this sacred event works.   There is no direct instruction for this ceremony in the Bible, so there is room for creativity and unique traditions.   However generally many weddings are very similar.   The primary goal of a wedding is to present that you, as a couple have made a solemn, bond of love in testimony of God.   First there is the lighting of the candles. Sometimes the candles are lit before the guests arrive.   Sometimes a Unity Candle is lit.   This includes two separate candles lit by the parents of the bride and groom, then Unity Candle lit later by the couple themselves.   The two outside candles represent the couples’ individual lives in that moment. The lighting of the Unity Candle with the two separate ones symbolizes the thoughts of each person will be for each other rather than for their separate lives.   Then the procession begins with the seating.   First the bride and grooms grandparents are seated.   Then the groom’s parents and bride’s mother follow suit.   After this, the minister and groom enter, followed by the bridesmaid, groomsmen, flower girl and ring bearer.   After this, the bride and her father enter and he gives her away.   Then the minister performs the charge to let...