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Can I schedule a wedding for Chol Hamoed?

Can I schedule a wedding for Chol Hamoed?

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According to Jewish law, weddings are not scheduled for Chol Hamoed (whether the Chol Hamoed of Passover and Sukkot).

The Talmud1 explains the reason for this injunction: "We do not confuse joy with joy." A wedding is a joyous occasion, and Chol Hamoed is a joyous occasion. Celebrating a wedding on Chol Hamoed, would deprive the festive day (and the wedding too) of the individual attention it deserves.

Incidentally, the Talmud infers this rule from the story of Jacob's marriage to Leah and Rachel. The morning after his wedding, Jacob realized that he had been duped by his father-in-law, Laban, who had presented to him a veiled Leah instead of Rachel—who was his choice for wife. When he demanded of Laban that he give him Rachel's hand in marriage, too, Laban responded: "Complete the [wedding] week of this one, and we will give you this one too."2 Jacob couldn't marry Rachel immediately, for that would have confused the joy of the two marriages.

For a complete listing of recommended and not-recommended dates for a wedding, see Approved Dates for a Wedding.

Rabbi Eliezer Posner

Footnotes
1.

Moed Katan 8b.

Eliezer Posner is a former member of the Chabad.org Ask the Rabbi team.
All names of persons and locations or other identifying features referenced in these questions have been omitted or changed to preserve the anonymity of the questioners.
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Anonymous Toronto, Ontario May 13, 2016

A wedding for Chol Hamoed Pesach would be problematic foodwise! While we do not have weddings during Chol Hamoed (Pesach or Sukkot), the dietary restrictions of the Passover would make it especially problematic. Reply

Susan Goodkin April 27, 2016

Is there gift giving on Chol Hamoed Reply

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