Skip to Content

Does the priest say you may now kiss the bride?

A wedding ceremony is a beautiful event filled with love, joy, and happiness. It’s a day that many couples look forward to, and it’s one that they’ll remember for the rest of their lives. During the ceremony, there are many traditions and customs that take place, from exchanging vows to exchanging rings. But there is one tradition that many people wonder about – does the priest say, “You may now kiss the bride”?

In this blog post, we’ll be exploring this question and looking at the history behind the tradition. We’ll also be discussing why some couples choose to forego this tradition and what other options they have.

The History Behind the Tradition

The tradition of the priest saying, “You may now kiss the bride,” goes back many years. It’s a tradition that has been passed down through generations, and it’s one that many couples continue to embrace today. While the exact origin of the tradition is unclear, it is believed to have originated in the Christian church.

In the past, weddings were viewed as sacraments in the Christian church. The ceremony was seen as a way for the couple to make a lifelong commitment to each other in front of God. The exchange of vows and rings were important parts of the ceremony, but the kiss was also seen as a significant part of the wedding ceremony.

The kiss was viewed as a symbol of the couple’s love and commitment to each other, and it was also seen as a way to seal their vows. The couple’s first kiss as husband and wife was a way to show the world that they were now united in marriage and that their love would last a lifetime.

Why Some Couples Choose to Forego the Tradition

While the tradition of the priest saying, “You may now kiss the bride,” is still a popular one, there are some couples who choose to forego this part of the ceremony. There are many reasons why a couple might make this decision.

For some couples, the idea of kissing in front of a crowd of people can be uncomfortable. They may feel nervous or shy about this part of the ceremony, and they may prefer to keep their first kiss as a married couple private.

Other couples may choose to forego the tradition because they want to put their own spin on their wedding ceremony. They may want to create a unique and personalized ceremony that reflects their own interests and values, and this may mean skipping certain traditions that don’t resonate with them.

Alternatives to the Traditional Kiss

For couples who want to forego the tradition of the priest saying, “You may now kiss the bride,” there are other options available. Here are a few alternatives to consider:

– Private Kiss: Instead of kissing in front of the crowd, some couples choose to share a private kiss after they’ve signed the marriage license. This allows them to have an intimate moment to celebrate their marriage without the pressure of an audience.

– Fist Bump or High-Five: For couples who want to keep things light and fun, a fist bump or high-five can be a fun alternative to the traditional kiss. This is a great way to inject some humor into the ceremony and show off your personalities.

– Ring Exchange: The exchange of rings is another important tradition in the wedding ceremony. For couples who want to forego the kiss, they can focus on the exchange of rings as a way to symbolize their commitment to each other.


The tradition of the priest saying, “You may now kiss the bride,” is a beautiful and meaningful part of the wedding ceremony. It’s a symbolic way for the couple to show their love and commitment to each other in front of their family and friends. However, for some couples, this tradition may not feel right for them.

If you’re getting married, it’s important to remember that your wedding ceremony should reflect your own values and beliefs. Whether you choose to embrace the tradition of the kiss or forego it in favor of something else, the most important thing is that your ceremony feels authentic to you and your partner.


What does the priest say at a wedding before the kiss?

A wedding ceremony is a joyous occasion, and a crucial part of this ceremony is the exchange of vows between the bride and groom. But, before they are declared husband and wife and finally express their love through the kiss, the priest signifies their union and invokes God’s blessing upon them with a few words.

In a traditional Christian wedding, the priest’s words before the kiss hold great significance. Once the bride and groom have finished reciting their vows, the priest offers a blessing primarily to ask God’s presence in the marriage, and that he may offer his assistance when required.

The phrase the priest says before the kiss can vary, depending on the denomination or religion, but usually, the priest begins with the words, “Now let us humbly invoke God’s blessing upon this bride and groom.” Then, the priest may ask the couple to bow their heads as he continues with the prayer. In this way, the priest calls upon God so that he may guide the couple and bless them in their union, and that they may find solace in Him.

After the prayer is completed, the priest will make the announcement, “In the sight of God and these witnesses, I now pronounce you husband and wife!” These sacred words signify that the bond between the two individuals is no longer simply a loving relationship but a lifelong commitment in the eyes of the church. Finally, the priest blesses the newly-wed couple before he announces the most awaited words: “You may now kiss!”

The words and blessings offered by the priest before the kiss signify the importance of marriage in the church and ask for divine guidance and protection for the couple. The exchange of vows and the priest’s blessing mark the exciting start of a new journey in the couple’s lives – a journey that they promise to make together with God’s grace.

Is it necessary to kiss the bride?

Kissing has become a common act during wedding ceremonies and is often seen as a symbol of love and commitment between the couple getting married. However, kissing is not a legal requirement or formal act that needs to be performed during a wedding. It is considered a highly personal choice between the bride and groom, and it is up to them to decide whether they want to include a kiss in their ceremony or not.

Some couples choose to forego the kiss entirely, while others opt for a more subtle or private kiss that is not seen by the guests. This decision may be influenced by cultural, religious, or personal beliefs, as well as individual preferences. For some couples, kissing in public may feel uncomfortable or inappropriate, while for others, it may be a natural expression of their love and affection.

It is important to note that a wedding ceremony is a celebration of the couple’s love and commitment to each other, and the format of the ceremony should reflect their relationship and values. Whether or not they choose to include a kiss as part of the ceremony is entirely up to the couple, who should feel free to make decisions based on what feels right for them.

Kissing is not an essential part of a wedding ceremony, and whether or not to include it is a personal choice that should be made by the bride and groom. The important thing is that the ceremony reflects their love and commitment to each other and that everyone involved feels comfortable and happy with the proceedings.

Why do Catholic priest kiss the altar before and after Mass?

Every time a Catholic priest prepares to celebrate the Mass, he begins by kissing the altar, and he does so again at the conclusion of the Mass. While this act may seem insignificant to many people, it actually has a deep spiritual significance rooted in the symbolism of the Catholic faith.

Firstly, the altar is the focal point of the Catholic Mass. It is the place where the bread and wine are consecrated and miraculously transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ. Therefore, the altar is treated with the utmost respect and reverence, similar to how Catholics venerate holy relics and icons.

Every time a priest kisses or reverences the altar, he does so in order to honor the altar of sacrifice (which represents Christ) where the miracle of the Eucharist occurs. By kissing the altar, the priest is acknowledging that he is not performing a casual or ordinary task, but is carrying out a sacred and holy responsibility.

Furthermore, the kiss signifies the union of the Spouse (Christ) and his Bride (the Church). In the Catholic Church, the altar is often referred to as the “Wedding Table,” as it is where the union between Christ and the Church takes place. By kissing the altar, the priest is symbolically showing his love and commitment to this union.

In addition, the kiss of the altar represents humility. The priest’s role is to humbly serve God and the community, and kissing the altar is a reminder of this. It serves as a reminder for the priest to be humble in his role of leading the Mass and to approach the altar with a pure and contrite heart.

Lastly, the kiss of the altar is also a reminder of the sacrificial nature of the Mass – that Christ sacrificed his life for us on the cross and that the priest is offering the sacrifice of the Mass on behalf of the faithful. Kissing the altar is a sign of appreciation and willingness to participate in this great sacrifice with Christ himself.

When a Catholic priest kisses the altar before and after Mass, he does so to honor the altar of sacrifice, symbolize the union of Christ and his church, show humility, and acknowledge the sacrificial nature of the Mass. It is a simple yet powerful gesture that reminds priests and faithful alike of the sacredness and profundity of the Catholic faith and its celebration of the Eucharist.