(Closed) Are programs necessary/good idea at a Jewish wedding?

posted 7 years ago in Jewish
  • poll: Should we have a program at our wedding to explain things?
    I'm not Jewish and would appreciate the program and explanations. : (15 votes)
    41 %
    I'm not Jewish and it wouldn't matter to me either way. : (2 votes)
    5 %
    I did this at my wedding and it was helpful. : (12 votes)
    32 %
    I didn't do this at my wedding and it didn't make a difference. : (3 votes)
    8 %
    Other (for every other potential category that was forgotten.) : (5 votes)
    14 %
  • Post # 3
    3564 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2010

    We didn’t have programs but our rabbi did a wonderful job of explaing the elements (the huppah, the wine ceremony, the breaking of the glass). So if your rabbi can do that, I don’t think it’s necessary. 

    Post # 4
    429 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2011

    I’m converting, so most of my friends and family have no experience with Jewish weddings. We’re having a program so that there’s no question that people know what’s happening from the very beginning. If the rabbi explains anything in the process, that’s icing on the cake.

    Post # 5
    654 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2011

    I’m not doing programs, but my ceremony is pretty typical civil stuff.  I’m not Jewish, either, and while a program would be helpful for following along, I’d get by without it just fine.  I usually think they’re pretty useless at a wedding, but most of the weddings I’ve been to have been in a format I already understand – as a non-Jew, I would be more appreciative of a program than usual.  If you didn’t provide one, though, I’m sure I’d be able to figure it out just because I know it’s a marriage ceremony and the traditional elements would just be special extras even if I didn’t specifically know what they meant.

    Maybe you should consider how many of your guests will be Jewish versus how many won’t.  If only a few people are going to be left in the dark, don’t bother with a program.  If the majority of your guests aren’t Jews, you might want to consider it.  Most people won’t miss it, but some might appreciate the extra help.

    Post # 6
    1645 posts
    Bumble bee

    As a Jew by Choice I am planning on having programs, if only for the fact my entire family has never even MET a Jew, much less been to a Jewish wedding. If you aren’t wanting to deal with the hassle of big programs, I kinda like the idea of the Rabbi walking everyone through. 

    Post # 7
    3982 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: July 2011

    Our wedding will be interfaith so we are certianly going to have a program. Mostly to explain the Jewish traditions. When I first started learning about a Jewish ceremony I was so lost so I know that it would be really helpful to any non-jews to have that there. As well as allowing for it to not take away from the ceremony by having the rabbi stop and explain everything.

    Post # 8
    2788 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: January 2011

    I think programs will be helpful for all of your guests.

    Post # 9
    2362 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2010 - New York Botanical Garden

    It depends how traditional your wedding is going to be, but most of our guests had never been to a wedding like ours, so they found our programs really helpful.  I started, and will be continuing to print the text of our program on the blog, so please feel free to borrow from that if you want to!  We didn’t do anything fancy with our programs – just set it up on a word doc, and printed it on several pages at Kinkos – I think it was less than a dolalr per program, and they were all gone at the end of the day!

    Post # 10
    2907 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: July 2011

    I selected #1, but I am Jewish. When there are interesting traditions, people want to know what’s going on.

    Post # 11
    6572 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: February 2010

    We didn’t do this. We had a very small ceremony (30 people) and most of the guests were Jewish. I’ve seen our rabbi do a wedding before, so I already knew that he would explain a lot of our traditions. I think it would have been helpful for the non Jews if we did programs, but since I was trying to save time and money, we opted not to.

    Post # 12
    1371 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2010

    I went to a Jewish wedding, and I was familiar with some of the traditions and not others.  I had friends who had no idea what was going on!  They had programs explaining the traditions (and some modifications they made to be more progressive) and we really appreciated them.  It helped to understand the meaning of a lot of the things that were going on, so we felt included in the ceremony instead of just confused!

    Post # 13
    3316 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2009

    We had programs at our wedding. Our programs contained the entire text of the ceremony, along with transliterations and translations of the Hebrew.  They also contained explanations of the various Jewish wedding customs.  Our guests seemed to find them helpful.

    Post # 14
    287 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2010

    we had an interfaith wedding and therefore, i felt that programs were necessary so that people had an idea what was going on. chuppah, breaking glass, ketubah, yichud etc. of course our cantor explained everything to, but the program is more in depth and people can read it while they’re sitting there waiting for the ceremony to start.

    also i think its a nice gesture to list your bridal party names out as well as put in a thank you to your guest and a rememberance of important people who are no longer there. in fact i’ve never been to a jewish wedding that did NOT have programs.

    they are cheap and easy, so why not? we printed them on slightly heavier 8×11 paper at a minuteman press and folded them in half. i think its a nice gesture that goes a long way.

    Post # 15
    2819 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: February 2013

    I love programs. : ) They’re a great momento for your guests who choose to keep them, plus I always love reading about different ceremony traditions.

    Post # 16
    937 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2010

    We had an interfaith Jewish/Catholic wedding, and we had programs because we didn’t want our guests to be confused. We designed them ourselves, had them printed off at Kinko’s, and everyone loved them!

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