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22 november 2011 09:55
Culture and Religion Blend at Yudhoyono Wedding
Cikeas, Indonesia - Traditional ceremonies leading up to the wedding of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s son kicked off on Tuesday in Cikeas and Jakarta.
“We will perform the [ceremony] from two sides: religious with an Islamic marriage vow and traditional with a mix of Javanese and Palembang traditions,” Yudhoyono said on Tuesday morning. “I want all of you who attend to pray to Allah to bless our event and to bring new life for our children.”
Yudhoyono’s youngest son, Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono, known as Ibas, is marrying politician Hatta Rajasa’s daughter, Siti Ruby Aliya Rajasa.
The first day of three days of ceremonies began on Tuesday morning with a prayer attended by 300 people including close relatives, ministers and Islamic education groups.
Later in the afternoon, Yudhoyono’s family will participate in blaketepe, a Javanese ceremony in which a green coconut weaving will be put on the housetop by the father of the bride and the groom assisted by the groom’s mother and another child.
The ceremony will continue with sungkeman, when the groom kneels down and presses his nose to his parent’s knees asking for their blessing.
Next will be siraman, a bathing ceremony performed by parents and family elders during which the hair of both the bride and groom is trimmed. Yudhoyono and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono will spoon-feed Ibas and let go of a chicken.
The first day of ceremonies will end with midodareni night, a meeting between the families of the bride-to-be and the groom-to be at Hatta’s house in Jakarta.
The Islamic wedding vow ceremony will be conducted at Cipanas palace on Thursday. The reception will be held at the JakartaConvention Center on Saturday at 7 p.m.