Post # 1
While we are having a fairly traditional Jewish ceremony (we’re conservative), with bedeken and yichud (but no Tisch or Kabbalat Panim), my fiance wants to have a completely secular reception (except for the Hora).
I’m fine with not having a challah or wine blessing at the reception and I don’t think our guests would care, but I wanted to ask other bees if you have seen weddings like this or plan to do your weddings like this.
Post # 3
I’m Jewish (grew up Reform, and it’s mostly a cultural thing now) but my husband is not. We had a very liberal rabbi perform our ceremony, and even my Mother-In-Law wanted to do “the chair thing” during the reception, haha! My Mother-In-Law is a very religious Christian, and my husband is agnostic. I was planning to skip the blessings at the reception, but my husband actually thought that my MIL’s Christian family/guests would be more offended by a lack of blessing than the Jewish version. And neither my husband nor I were comfortable with a Christian blessing. So, we ordered this awesome 8-lb challah and had my dad recite the hamotzi and bless the wine. It took maybe a minute.
I think it depends on your social circle. If people are used to waiting for a blessing, then it might not be clear to them whether it’s polite to start eating. So, you might want to substitute it with a welcome speech or toast.
Post # 4
The blessings were honestly so short at ours, so it hardly made a difference. Our reception was pretty secular outside of the horah, and we did not bench after the meal because everyone was dancing and having fun. Those blessings took just a minute or two and it was good because it helped us transition from our entrance/first dance to the meal. I definitely would not have minded (or probably even noticed) if we skipped it, though.
Post # 5
I’ve never seen it but I don’t really think it would be a problem. My feeling towards doing the blessing is like “why not” but if he is really opposed to it, just leave it out.
Post # 6
@GretaCT: You actually wouldn’t do a blessing over wine at the reception no matter what, since you already made kiddush TWICE under the chuppah and, presumably, anyone who is Jewish said “amen”. You don’t *need* to do a mass motzi, whoever is religious enough will say the blessing themselves before eating bread anyways if there isn’t a giant challah at the party. Hope that helps!
Post # 7
@vintageclassy: this is correct.
I’ve never seen a wedding where there wasn’t a group motzi but, as the above poster said, people can make their own motzi if they’d like. Its not something I would skip (and its one more honor to give to a friend of family member), but if its not right for your reception, then you should do what works for you.
Just out of curiosity, why are you doing a traditional ceremony but then a secular reception? Just wondering…
Post # 8
Nearly all of our guests are not observant. I’m converting, and we both agreed that we really like the traditions of bedeken and yichud.
In terms of the motzi, I think my fiance just felt that his family never does it, not even at a Rosh Hashanah family meal for example, and why do it at the wedding.
Post # 9
As PP said, you don’t need to do a kiddush, and individual guests can say their own motzi if they so choose. Nothing says you need to do a group recitation.
Post # 10
Thanks for the advice everyone!