What are the customs of Quaker weddings? Why do they do the things they do? What do you need to know about a Quaker wedding before you attend?
Quaker weddings are simple worship services in which the bride and groom announce their decision to become husband and wife in front of God, their family, and their friends.
Unlike many other religions, there is no minister leading the Quaker wedding service, and believe it or not, there is no set order of events in the proceedings. Someone briefly explains to the guests that the meeting is about to begin, and there is an announcement in which it is asked for anyone who feels so inclined may present a special message or a prayer. Usually about 15 minutes into the ceremony, the bride and groom take it upon themselves to stand up, turn to each other, hold hands, and exchange marriage vows. Later in the Quaker wedding, a person designated as an Overseer asks the couple to sign the Marriage Certificate to make it legal. Then someone reads the certificate to the group. Finally, once again, guests are permitted to say whatever they want, offer a prayer, or their holy thoughts. Then everybody shakes hands with one another.
The Quaker religion is among the simplest of all religions. They don't take it upon themselves to spend a lot of money on a fancy wedding ceremony, nor do they feel they need to particularly dress up for the occasions, although they can if they feel so inclined.
If you're about to attend a Quaker wedding, be ready for simplicity. It doesn't get much simpler in weddings than this. But the couple that marries in the Quaker church takes each other freely and equally as life-long partners. They make a commitment to stay together throughout their lifetimes, dedicating themselves to each other and to their God.