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nm1999

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I am going to be attending a wedding in Greece. What are some of the traditions I can expect? I saw online:

- Writing names of the bridal party on the bride's shoes (I am not in the bridal party)
- Decorating the bed for the bride and groom
- Or course, having the service in an orthodox church

I am sure I missed some!
 
There will be no bridesmaids or groomsmen

The bride will write her friends names on the bottom of one of her shoes

If you're invited to one of the house's before the wedding, expect a ton of food and dancing

The bride and groom will drive separately to the church with their friends and family. You will know they are approaching by the sound of car horns getting louder (they honk their horns nonstop when they get close to the church)

The bride and groom are the first to enter the church. All of the guests will wait outside of the church and follow behind the bride and groom

There is no kissing in Greek weddings. The bride and groom are officially married when they walk around the table 3 times.

While the bride and groom are walking around the table, the guests will throw rice once the bride and groom begin their second walk around the table.

The beginning of the reception will happen fast after the couple takes pictures. The couple will walk in together, go straight to dancing, then cut the cake.Then you'll eat.

During the reception, and depending in the tradition of where the couple's family is from, you may hear a miroloi (a lament; pronounced mee-roh-loh-ee) or you may not. You'll know they're playing a miroloi because everyone will be silent/crying. Once that is over the immediate family will all dance together and later friends and other family members (aunts and uncles) will join in.

Greeks don't give wedding gifts; they give money
 
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I had bridesmaids and groomsmen at my GO wedding, and every one I've attended (lots) had them. This is in the US. Perhaps it's not done that way in Greece.

Guests were seated in church when bridesmaids walked in and then bride is escorted down the aisle by her father.

In the US the priest typicaly prompts bride and groom to kiss at the end of marriage ceremony.

There were no names written on the soles of my shoes.

The reception started with a sit-down dinner. The band played during dinner. As soon as dinner finished, bridal party and immediate family got up for Greek dancing.

Shortly after bridal party is dancing, members will usually reach out to guests and encourage them to dance, and then guests can join in with dancing.

It may well be different in Greece and perhaps in other parts of the US, but this was my experience a gazillion years ago. LOL.
 
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I had bridesmaids and groomsmen at my GO wedding, and every one I've attended (lots) had them. This is in the US. Perhaps it's not done that way in Greece.

Guests were seated in church when bridesmaids walked in and then bride is escorted down the aisle by her father.

In the US the priest typicaly prompts bride and groom to kiss at the end of marriage ceremony.

There were no names written on the soles of my shoes.

The reception started with a sit-down dinner. The band played during dinner. As soon as dinner finished, bridal party and immediate family got up for Greek dancing.

Shortly after bridal party is dancing, members will usually reach out to guests and encourage them to dance, and then guests can join in with dancing.

It may well be different in Greece and perhaps in other parts of the US, but this was my experience a gazillion years ago. LOL.
Your answer doesn't answer the original question " what are some if the traditions that can be expected at Greek weddings in Greece", not Greek American weddings. What you said is fairly common in America. What I talked about is only done by Greeks in Greece or is very specific to Greece,. Even in America, the kiss isn't necessary. In the Orthodox church, the kiss doesn't make the bride and groom married, it's walking around the table 3 times that does. Kissing is something that is traditional in America, so all weddings have a kiss at the end.

Anyway, another tradition (old tradition) is the bride is led to the church by a band playing a wedding song. The bride follows behind the band with her dad and her family walks behind her up until they meet the groom waiting at the front of the church where the dad hands her to the groom.

My wife and I are in our early 30s and this is what happened at our wedding last year (in Greece; she was born and raised in Greece and I'm Greek-American). I wanted to make it more traditional by wearing outfits from our villages, but she threatened to not show up... haha

Another thing Americans will find unique is that there is no dress code at Greek weddings (in Greece). You can wear whatever you want - it's not uncommon to see some people in shorts and others in suits.. people will be all over the spectrum with how formal/informal they are, and you can't tell people what to wear because it is considered rude. There is also no wedding rehearsal or rehearsal dinner either.
 
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Greek weddings are rich with traditions that make the ceremonies unique and unforgettable. The customs you've already mentioned are definitely part of the mix, but there are a few more you might encounter:

The Koumbaro or Koumbara: This is the Greek equivalent of the best man or maid of honor, and their role is integral in the ceremony, even exchanging the wedding crowns between the bride and the groom.
Stefana Crowns: Connected by a single ribbon, these crowns symbolize the couple's unity.

Since you're going to be a guest, you might be thinking about how to dress appropriately for such an occasion. If you're inclined to take the formal route, https://www.gentlemansguru.com/product-category/wedding-tuxedos/ has an exceptional range of wedding tuxedos that could make you fit right in, in the most stylish way possible.
 
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Greek weddings are rich with traditions that make the ceremonies unique and unforgettable. The customs you've already mentioned are definitely part of the mix, but there are a few more you might encounter:

The Koumbaro or Koumbara: This is the Greek equivalent of the best man or maid of honor, and their role is integral in the ceremony, even exchanging the wedding crowns between the bride and the groom.

Stefana Crowns: Connected by a single ribbon, these crowns symbolize the couple's unity.

I'm not sure how I forgot any of this.

In Greece, traditionally, your koubaros/koubara also become the godparent(s) for your future kids.
 
Wow, this has been so helpful - thank you for all of your thoughtful responses. I have a clear idea of what to expect!
 

Why Greeks Roast a Whole Lamb on the Spit on Easter Sunday?

A quote from excellent posting below!
"John, the author of one of the four Gospels, called Jesus the Lamb of God in John 1:29 and John 1:36. In the story, Abraham had to sacrifice an animal, such as a lamb or a ram, as an important part of the Jewish religion. People offered God restitution for the sins they committed.
However, Christians no longer need to engage in sacrifice because Christ died on the cross for their sins, thus becoming the sacrificial lamb."

Since Pascha, or Easter, is the day when we commemorate Jesus’ sacrifice, we eat lamb in remembrance of this selfless act
https://greekreporter.com/2024/05/0...ast+a+Whole+Lamb+on+the+Spit+on+Easter+Sunday

Greek Easter Holy Week Liturgies!

Greek Naming Traditions?

I have noticed that in Greece, there are some traditions associated with naming their children. Although some Greek families in the United States have done this, many have seemed to lose the traditions.

Does anyone know what some of these traditions are? I am helping a friend name his upcoming child... Here's some of what I have learned:

1. Firstborn daughter names after maternal grandmother
2. Firstborn son named after paternal grandfather
3. Firstborn son named after father

Those are the ones I have figured out. I don't know what is traditional from Greece and what has just been made up amongst Greeks in the US.

Daily Life in the Villages?

I'm curious about daily life in Greek villages. What is it like to live in these rural areas? How do people typically spend their days? I'm interested in learning about their routines, social activities, and community events.

Also, how does village life differ from life in the cities? Are there specific traditions or customs that are more prevalent in the villages? I’d love to hear about local cuisine, any unique festivals, and how people maintain their homes and farms.

If anyone has personal experiences or insights into the rhythms of daily life in Greek villages, please share! I'm eager to understand more about this aspect of Greek culture and what makes village life special.

Thinking about the Greek way of hospitality...

I thought I would ask your thoughts oh Philoxenia - or the Greek way, or art, of hospitality. I noticed this when I travel in Greece. People are so kind, they often go out of the way for us, when I feel that they don't have to! How can one describe this to someone?

From what I understand, Philoxenia is not merely a practice but a deeply ingrained value within Greek culture that extends far beyond the simple act of hosting. It reflects a genuine, heartfelt welcome to strangers, treating them with the same respect and generosity one would show to a dearly beloved friend. This beautiful tradition, passed down through generations, turns the act of hosting into an art form, embodying warmth, respect, and a profound sense of human compassion. There have been so many stories I can think of...

This thought process was triggered because we were watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3 - someone in the village had taken on a Syrian refugee. Is this a Greek hospitality thing? Philoxenia?
Share and discuss Greek traditions related to Greek weddings, christenings, dance & holidays!

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