THE CULTURE AND CUSTOM OF THE CHINESE COMMUNITIES: MARRIAGE - WEDDING CEREMONY
The wedding ceremony is held after a year of engagement or according to the duration as agreed upon by both parties. Before the actual date, if there were a death among the families of both parties, the wedding must be postponed until the next year or for 100 days. It is deemed improper and uncourteous to hold a wedding ceremony when others are mourning.
Both bride and groom are beautifully dressed up on the wedding day. In those years the Chinese adorned wedding attire made of silk with golden thread and complemented with various accessories. The wedding attire is best in white, red or yellow. It is forbidden to wear black, blue or grey as these colours are believed to signify death and unhappiness.
The groom goes to the bride house and they are seated on a ready dias in the living area, accompanied with their own ushers. That is the first time the couple sit together. After the sitting on the dias ceremony the newly weds are brought to meet their families and relatives, with the purpose of requesting for blessings from the families of their in-laws.
The Chinese custom of tea drinking has its own meaning and is very important as well as is still practiced today. This custom signifies the acceptance of the couple especially the bride into her husband family, apart from strengthening family bond. In this tea drinking ceremony the newly-wed couple serves tea to the groom relatives. The sitting on the dias ceremony and tea drinking ceremony are less practiced by the Chinese communities today.
The climax of the wedding ceremony is the big dinner held either at home, in a hall or in a restaurant. Guests bring Ang-Pau as gifts to the newly-wed couple. At the same time the couple can get to know each partner family members. As a wedding proof both couple sign two wedding documents called Keat Foon Ching Su in front of several guests.
Nowadays, the Chinese communities prefer to choose civil marriage that is registering the marriage in churches for Christian couple.