Friday, October 17, 2008

Wedding Guest Etiquette

A great read for anyone involved in a wedding, this guide provides insight into wedding ceremonies from various religions and cultures. If you've been invited to a wedding ceremony you're not familiar with, this compilation gives a basic outline for understanding the meaning of the rite, so you'll know what to expect and what's expected of you. A note to business travelers: Businesspeople in many cultures will often honor important business colleagues by inviting them to a wedding, especially if the colleague is in town at the time of the event. Don't be caught with your etiquette down: read this.

A wedding is a wonderful celebration of the union of two people and their families. As wedding guests these days, especially in North America, we may be exposed to a wide variety of cultures and religions and witness the various traditions of their ceremonies. Also, with the increasing trend toward mixed marriages, wedding celebrations often incorporate cultural and religious elements from both families. As much as it seems that the typical Western-style wedding is predominant practically everywhere throughout the world, there appears to be a renewed interest in Canada and the United States in honoring our past and heritage by reviving traditions from our own families.

Such being the case, many guests are often unsure about proper etiquette and customs when attending weddings outside of their own experience. So, here are some general guidelines. Keep in mind that in most traditions and cultures, there will be variations or different adaptations depending on local custom or personal taste. I even know of cases where although the bride and groom are from the same culture, the parents on each side will insist on "traditional" rituals that are completely foreign to the other family. I hope the following information will give you a basic understanding and a good starting point. Enjoy the ceremony.

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