Lei Alohalani – Our Most Popular Marriage or Vow Re-Affirmation
The Lei Alohalani (Heavenly Lei of Love) ceremony is a beautiful weaving of familiar non-denominational wedding customs with our ancient and modern Native Hawaiian cultural traditions. Hawai`i’s floral leis (flower garlands) have the same meaning and symbolism as wedding rings, and because of the way the traditional groom’s (maile) bridal lei is woven, the metaphor of fashioning a beautiful lei is carried throughout the ceremony with each blossom representing the bride, the groom and their loved-ones united into a circle of eternal and unconditional aloha (love).
The marriage is conducted in English and enhanced with our melodic Native Hawaiian language in the form of traditional and original prayers created by your officiant Kahu “Kalani” Silva, to bless the sacred union of the couple as appropriate to the cultural integrity of our Native Hawaiian rites. Warm and engaging, this ceremony is inspired by the true spirit of aloha and our friendly island customs and casual lifestyle. The bride, groom and ohana (family) are embraced with warm aloha as Kahu Kalani often speaks from the heart – extemporaneously – from the energies he feels from the bride and groom as they stand before him. Thus, no two ceremonies are ever performed exactly alike creating a truly one-of-a-kind and highly personalized wedding experience for you and your family to fondly remember and cherish for a lifetime. Rich with cultural symbolism, everyone present is forever touched by the romantic mystique, ancient mysteries and history of our Hawaiian island paradise.
Spiritually uplifting and always very dignified (never any embarrassing and tasteless touristy phases like, “now you may lei your bride”), the wedding respectfully begins with the cantillation of an ancient Hawaiian oli (welcome chant) by Kahu Silva – a highly respected master chanter – performed in the classical style, welcoming the couple, their family, and guests to old Hawai`i. Kahu then asks Akua (God, Supreme Creator/Creative Force), to bestow universal blessings upon all who are gathered. And, as is our Hawaiian custom of respect, Kahu acknowledges the benevolent forces of the universe and ancient Hawaiian guardian spirits of the earth, sea and sky and the four corners of the earth to join the couple in their celebration of aloha, and to protect them in their journey while in Hawai`i and throughout their entire journey in life together. Don’t be surprised if any of these wonderful “gifts of nature” (many endangered creatures) and some considered Hawaiian `aumakua (ancestors), physically manifest themselves in acknowledgement as they often do, in the form of honu (Hawaiian green sea turtle), `ilio-holo-i-kauaua (endangered Hawaiian monk seal), nai`a (porpoise), kohola (whale), pueo (owl), ‘io, (hawk), anuenue (brilliant single or double rainbow), makani ahe ahe (sudden breeze) or ua noe (soft misty rain). If any of these appear, this is regarded as a very special blessing for the couple.
As one happy couple wrote, “Thank you for our beautiful wedding ceremony. Your attention to detail and calm directions surpassed all of our expectations. Everything from the butterflies, the light showers right after the ceremony, the rainbow, not to forget the monk seal – absolutely blessed and perfect.”
Following the Hawaiian-style welcome, Hawaiian wedding blessings, Kahu Kalani imparts a secret and deeper meaning of aloha preparing the couple for the uniting of their hearts as one, in the bond of a lifetime. If they wish, the couple may then express heart-to-heart sentiments of love with each other before exchanging traditional formal wedding vows. Couples may also write their own vows and share them directly with each other. The highlight and signature of this special moment is the symbolic lei “weaving” accompanied by an ancient lei chant from the legends of old Hawai`i followed by the sharing and presentation of the bridal leis honoring each other as husband and wife. Each time a couple is joined in love in this unique island way, they are forever united with the mana (spirit) of aloha, the `aina (land) and people of Hawai`i. The “sands” of Hawai`i become the new birthplace of their aloha for each other and new life as husband and wife.
This approximately 20-minute ceremony culminates – if you wish – with a sweet Hawaiian honihoni (Hawaiian-style kiss) symbolizing that the husband and wife are sharing the alo -“ha” (breath) of life and each other’s mana or spirit. Or, you may simply share your own traditional kiss.
Na Hulu Mamo – Honoring Your Parents – Another Very Popular & Most Touching Ritual
In the Hawaiian culture, the elders of the ohana (family) or kupuna were held in the highest of esteem. The Hulu Mamo ceremony is a warm and touching ritual within the marriage ceremony giving the couple an opportunity to expresses their deepest aloha, their highest esteem, and appreciation to their parents with the presentation of leis. It also symbolically unites their families together. Upon request, this ritual may be performed as a surprise to parents. A very brief memorial element is also available honoring the cherished memory of a beloved parent who has passed.
Our Most Sacred Ancient Hawaiian Ceremonies
Ka Wai Ola – The Waters of Life Unity Ceremony
The early Hawaiian had a great reverence for fresh water as a precious gift from the gods and as the most important force required to sustain all life. It represented prosperity for the individual who had water was considered prosperous. The ability to grow and nourish himself and others gave him the power to speak with the voice of authority. Throughout the world water is also an important element used for cleansing, purification, protection and blessings. The Wai Ola marriage ritual symbolically unites the life energies (mana) of the bride and groom in their bond of a lifetime using the sacred fresh waters of the ancient god Kane (ka wai kapu a Kane) gathered prior to the ceremony by the Kahu in an ancient ritual on the sacred (taboo/kapu) night of Kane from a secret spring or from a special consecrated location. The water must always remain pure and never touched by human hands before or after it is gathered.
Ka Wai Kapu – The Sacred Waters Unity Ceremony
This incorporates 3 sacred fresh water rituals into one – the Wai Ola, Wai Huikala and Pi Wai. The ceremony begins with the Wai Ola ritual, the Wai Huikala ritual with the sacred Ha ritual is then performed spiritually freeing the bride and groom from all past problems preparing them to accept each other for who they are and to forever share their love unconditionally and finally, the Pi Wai sacred blessing of the couple.
Kailani Blessing Ritual – Heavenly Sea Wedding Blessing
The ancient Hawaiian creation chant the Kumulipo which greatly parallels the Christian Genesis although they were written in vastly different times, demonstrates the great respect the Hawaiian has for the sea. Like freshwater, seawater is also considered sacred and used by the Hawaiians for cleansing, purification, protection and blessing. The Kailani ceremony acknowledges the sea as the source of all life on earth and the heritage of the Hawaiian people. whose ancestors navigated the vast Pacific in search of new lands long before the Vikings made their great voyages. The ceremony begins at the ocean shoreline with a recitation of the Kumulipo by Kahu. Seawater is reverently gathered from special waves for the ceremony by the kahu in advance of the ceremony. Highlighting the marriage ceremony is the traditional Hawaiian Pi kai ritual to bless the couple and the their union.
Hui Kahi I Kai One – Unity Sand Ceremony – Hawaiian Style
The ancient Hawaiians were a courageous, adventurous, seafaring people. From a mythical place called Hawaiki, they sailed across the vast Pacific ocean, searching for new lives and homelands and settled in the tiny Polynesian isles of paradise. Kai One is the Hawaiian poetic expression for the island shores which greeted these early Hawaiians and symbolizes the important connection to both the sea and to the homeland land of their ancient ancestors. It represents their heritage and relationship to Papa (Earth Mother/Mother Nature.) For it is Papa, who sustains, nurtures, protects, and embraces the Hawaiian people within her bosom. Thus, Hawaiians reverently referred to their island birthplace as ke one hanau (the sands of our birth). The Kai One wedding “hoohui” or symbolically unites the couple with the spirit of the land. They become one with and are forever united with it. Hawaii becomes the birthplace of their new life together and a memorable place to celebrate their love in their hearts forever. The western sand ceremony using colored sand is different from the sentiments and idea shared in this ceremony. The important concept in the Hui Kahi I Kai One is that once joined, the union is greater than the individuals alone.
* The 4 ancient ceremonies described above requires advanced preparation, the transporting and setup of the ceremonial vessels and ceremonial. Couples are asked to furnish a small table to accommodate these sacred objects.
Ho`omaleana Hou – Vow Reaffirmation
This romantic island style marriage vow re-affirmation provides a wonderful opportunity for a married couple to re-affirm their aloha and the important significance of their lifetime commitment in the partnership of marriage on their anniversary date. It celebrates a couple’s continuing meaningful relationship in happiness. Recalling their original vows, the couple shares special memories, reunites their hearts, and sentimentally reaffirms their vows with traditional Hawaiian blessing rituals and ancient prayer chants and the exchange of Hawaiian leis.
Ho`omaikai I Ka Maleana – Hawaiian Marriage Blessing
The perfect ceremony to be spontaneous or to celebrate a couple’s intimate connection of body, mind and spirit without the legalities. The Hoomaikai blessing embraces the essence of the Native Hawaiian spirituality as it is expressed through ancient chants, taboo rituals and sacred prayers. Couples are given special insights into the culture, customs, and traditions as a legacy of the early Hawaiian which is not usually know to the Hawaii resident or accessible to the average visitor to Hawaii. The blessing rites offer married or engaged couples and their families, a rare opportunity to capture the romance of the islands, experience a true Hawaiian spiritual connection with the land and enjoy a beautiful sharing of the hidden meaning of “aloha.” If performed as a re-affirmation, there’s no need to wait for your anniversary date. It may be performed at any time.
Two Hearts United As One – Ho`okahi Pu`uwai Wedding Package at the Seaside Cove
This is an exciting, all inclusive and very affordable wedding experience that offers the ceremony and a full evening of Polynesian entertainment and a bountiful all-you-can-eat buffet on the beach under the stars. We’ve teamed up with the world famous and one of the longest running authentic Hawaiian lū`aus in Hawai`i – Germaineʻs “Too Good To Miss” Lū`au. Please send email to request our detailed information packet.
OUR INTER-FAITH & MULTI-ETHNIC WEDDING CEREMONIES
Hawaii is a wonderful “melting pot” of cultures and Hawaii Wedding Associates, LLC celebrates Hawaii’s cultural and spiritual diversity. These ceremonies were originally created for our multi-ethnic or inter-faith couples who wished to incorporate their cultural or spiritual customs into their marriage.
Kokoni Sachi Ari Japanese Ceremony – Here is Happiness
Frequently requested and a truly elegant and dignified wedding ceremony, the Kokoni Sachi Ari ceremony is performed by Kahu Silva using the Hawaiian, Japanese, and English languages celebrating the beauty of all three cultures and the best of their wedding traditions. An ancient Hawaiian ceremonial chant precedes the groom’s processional to the wedding site, the bridal procession follows with the customary ceremonial exchange of formal Japanese and western protocol and presentation of the bride.
Sampagita (Hawaiian/Filipino or Hispanic Customs
Another ceremony very popular with residents and visitors, the Sampagita ceremony blends the beauty of traditional Christian/Catholic wedding customs with the ancient Hawaiian cultural and ethnic Hispanic/Mexican or Filipino traditions. This exquisite wedding ceremony includes the traditional marital and ring vows, the blessing and exchange of the 13 coins, the placement of the veil, the cord entwining ritual, the lighting of the unity candle (an additional option), our signature honorific bridal lei exchange, acknowledgement of the principal sponsors and the sharing of more authentic Hawaiian customs. A formal consultation/rehearsal is required if there are numerous bridal attendants and sponsors. (The ceremonial implements: cord, veil, 13 coins, table, unity candle (if any), are to be furnished by the couple. The ceremony is performed in Hawaiian & English only.)
Hawaii Iukaio Maleana – Hawaiian & Jewish Customs
A traditional Jewish wedding is celebrated with meaningful rituals, expressing the profound significance and the divine purpose of marriage. The ceremony weaves the beauty of Hawaiian and Jewish wedding traditions in a very powerful spiritual ceremony. Like the ceremonial horn the Jewish shofar, the bellowing call of the traditional Hawaiian conch shell (additional option) heralds the start of the ceremony. Ancient Hawaiian chants announce the arrival of the Kahuna Nui (high priest) followed by the processions of the chatan and Kallah and their entourage. Native Hawaiian wedding prayers and rituals, the symbolic giving of the rings, the sharing of wedding vows, a reading of the Ketubah, an honorific Hawaiian lei exchange and the ceremonial breaking of the glass with shouts of “Mazel Tov” unites the couple in their new life together in a one-of-a kind romantic island-style Jewish wedding. Note: The ceremony is performed in Hawaiian and English only.
All ceremonies always include our “signature” bridal lei exchange – where the bride honors her new husband and the groom honors his new wife with the presentation of leis – unless the couple specifically requests us to omit this ritual.