Additional Program Definitions

By InterfaithFamily

Return to the Guide to Wedding Ceremonies for Interfaith Couples.


  •  Mazel tov: Mazel tov literally means “good constellations” in Hebrew. It is a blessing for good luck as in “may the stars create a clear path for you in your future together.” Today it simply means “congratulations.”
  •  Hora: A traditional Jewish dance of celebration performed at the beginning of the reception.
  •  Mezinke: Dance to honor parents who have married their last daughter. This will take place towards the end of the reception.
  •  Yihud: Means union in Hebrew. A Jewish custom where the bride and groom spend a few moments alone together immediately following the ceremony. It gives the couple an opportunity to share, privately, the power and importance of this moment in their lives. They will greet you at your tables during the reception.
  •  Recessional: The recessional is usually created around one piece of music for the wedding party, followed by wedding party and sets of parents, grandparents and then wedding guests. Since the couple will often go into yichud together away from guests, immediately following the wedding, the guests usually go directly to the celebration and don’t create a receiving line. This is often left to the discretion of the couple, although some clergy have feelings about these customs, so ask them. 


The Guide to Wedding Ceremonies for Interfaith Couples is also available in PDF and Word formats.


About InterfaithFamily

InterfaithFamily is the premier resource supporting interfaith couples exploring Jewish life and inclusive Jewish communities. We offer educational content; connections to welcoming organizations, professionals and programs; resources and trainings for organizations, clergy and other program providers; and our new Rukin Rabbinic Fellowship will provide offerings for couples in cities nationwide. If you have suggestions, please contact