The Processional "Here Comes the Bride" and the Recessional "The Wedding March."

Topics: A Midsummer Night's Dream, Wedding, Felix Mendelssohn Pages: 8 (2606 words) Published: May 18, 2005
The processional "Here Comes the Bride" and the recessional "The Wedding March."

I am writing why the processional "Here Comes the Bride" and the recessional "The Wedding March" are being prohibited in the Catholic Church. As a catholic girl, I have always dreamed of walking down the aisle to "Here Comes the Bride," and leaving the wedding to "The Wedding March." This was to be the moment that I could cherish , the moment that would be unforgettable. Now that I am ready to be married, is when I am upset that these two songs are no longer allowed in the Catholic Church.

The catholic church's approach on the music of a wedding, is that the function of music is to be minsterial, and the music must serve and never dominate. The catholic church states that what is true for Sunday liturgy is true for the wedding liturgy, and Sunday Mass sets the standard for all other liturgies.

These two pieces of music are considered Secular music, which is defined in the Webster's Dictinary as "of" or relating to worldly things as distinguished from things relating to church or religion; not sacred or religious.

There are many religions that have restrictions on the type of music that is allowed at a wedding or ceremony. The Protestant religion will most generally allow secular music during the ceremony, however you will still need to consult your officiant regarding guidelines. For a Jewish ceremony, secular music is usually allowed in Reform and Conservative Jewish weddings, however in an Orthodox ceremony, the music is traditionally performed with only one instrument, the violin or the flute. For an Eastern Orthordox ceremony, traditionally the only music allowed is sung by an unaccompanied choir, but organs and instruments are becoming more acceptable. For a Muslim ceremony, there is usually no music performed during the ceremony. For a Hindu ceremony, music is an intergral part of the ceremony that most often includes vocals, drums, string and wind instruments. The Hindu ceremony is dictated by the type of ceremony, so personalization of a selection may be restricted. For a Roman Catholic ceremony only nonsecular music is allowed.

The processional "Here Comes the Bride" is a song by Richard Wagner's "Bridal Chorus." Some people refer to this song as "corny" and recollecting it as songs played in a Las Vegas Wedding Chapel. However, supposedly there are religious reasons as to why this song should not be played in a church let alone a catholic church.

The song comes from Act III of Richard Wagner's opera Lohengrin, which has been describe in musical standards as being rich and profound. However, the plot of the opera are full of contorted twists and turns. In this opera there is magic, deceit, trickery, superstition , love, and the death of the unhappy lover. In religious standards this song has nothing sacred about it.
Wagner was arguably the greatest musical genius of the 19th century. His musical career was brilliant, considering that he never had a music lesson or was able to play any instrument. His interest in music was aesthetic and philosophical. Wagner has referred to himself as cantankerous, anti-Semitic and misogynous. Wagner saw himself as a God-like spiritual reformer..

Wagner started work on Lohengrin in 1845, getting his inspiration from an anonymous German epic poem. It relates the story of Parsifal's son Lohengrin, sent by God in a swan-drawn boat to champion a young maiden accused of killing her brother. Lohengrin clears her name in combat with her accuser and wins her love, betrothing himself to her on the condition that she never ask his name or origin. Elsa, the young maiden, agrees but her mind is soon poisoned by doubts through the scheming of the witch Ortrud (At this point, is where the song becomes associated with weddings because it is used in Lohengrin at the marriage between the title character and Elsa). Ortrud desired Elsa's inherited lands for her husband, Telramund. Elsa...

1. WEDDINGBELLS.CA. (2004) Music in the House. (Online)
2. (1996-2004) (Online)
3. Kaulback, D. (1995-2004) Beyond "Here Comes the Bride" (Online)
4. Penkala, G. (11-2004) "Is the Groom Really a Jackass?" (Online)
5. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.. (11-2004). Richard Wagner. (Online)
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