Everything You Need To Know Before You Go To A Mennonite Wedding

Mennonites are a group of people who belong to a sect of Christianity. The group is most commonly referred to as Pacifists, who do not believe in violence. Their belief is practiced around the world. Africa ranks#1 with the most Mennonites and the United States is number two. There are a little over 2 million Mennonites living and practicing their religion worldwide. The Mennonites share similar beliefs with the Amish in their appearance and living a very plain and simple life.

Recently, I got invited to a Mennonite wedding for a good friend of mine. I was excited for so many reasons, one being I haven’t been to a wedding in I don’t know how long and I was just really looking forward to experiencing a different sort of culture at their wedding. Weeks prior to the wedding, I kept looking online for a step-by-step bible for the do’s and don’ts at a Mennonite wedding. I couldn’t really find one that would be fitting for my friend. See, my friend is a Mennonite and his wife grew up Amish. Together as a couple, they are pretty modernized in their tastes so I was a bit confused.

When in doubt…over do it!

Never is it a crime to dress to the hill no matter what religion the bride or groom are. I assumed the guests would be dressed casual and laid-back based on the kind of the memo I was given. So I ran with it, picking out a real conservative country outfit! It was quite a melting pot.  At the wedding, you would find guests dressed in a suit and tie, some in jeans and a button down and then I even saw 2 girls dressed in an outfit you would go clubbing in! (That I was most shocked about!) Trust me, I kind of wished I knew about the “wear what you want” dress code because I was literally all covered up and boiling.

What is the rule on jewelry and makeup?

Majority of the Mennonite woman at the wedding did not wear makeup or jewelry unless it was their wedding ring.  Everyone else that wasn’t practicing the religion dressed how they pleased. However, if you wish to “blend-in” and be respectful dress modest.

Dancing, toasts, and alcoholic beverages are NOT allowed!

If you are expecting to have fun at the “open bar” you may be out of luck. They will not be an option. The alcohol rule to me was kind of an obvious one. But the no dancing or making a speech was kind of shocking and I was really looking forward to booging!

They just played soft music you might hear at a holiday dinner mixed with a scary movie sound leaving you in suspense thinking something is about to happen. We all sat there in desperate anticipation looking around the room wondering what was going to happen next.

No touching the bride’s husband even if it’s to get his attention!  

Yup, you can sure say I definitely didn’t get that memo as I lean over and put my hand on my friend Jason’s shoulder for a photo. As I went in to ask for a photo with Jason and his new bride and my hot date, Zach, I received this cold glare from the bride like, “don’t you even think about stealing my man!”

Now, I hope you have a little bit better idea of what a Mennonite is like and how to act and dress the next time you get invited to a wedding like this.  Just remember to be on your best behavior. That means if you see a couple is Mennonite, do not even think about talking to the woman’s husband in front of her. Have a conversation with her to make her more comfortable and trust you.  I know it’s a lot to know. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be a pro at this. Just be open and respectful.

Featured image via Jonathan Borba on Unsplash


  1. Just to let you know, I am a Mennonite. If the wedding is at a church that practices the head covering, it is appreciated to be dressed modestly…. No, conservative Mennonites do not wear gold, not even a wedding ring. Typically there is a division between male & female. The lines are funky of where that is. Men never hug women. Perhaps just shake their hands. If a woman were to wear a conservative shirt, long skirt or dress (think ankles) not form fitting, no make up, etc., it would seem much more polite. While all are appreciated to come, it’s courteous. Plus it’s church!

    • I must be an undercover Mennonite cause at a job I hugged female coworkers. I was tge only male worker. Tgen a second male started working tgere. Let’s say he put an end to hinging your coworker. And he wasn’t a Mennonite.

  2. As a Mennonite, this is really random and wild to read. Mennonites vary widely in their practices. Re: touching or talking to the husband… a lot of brides aren’t wild about people touching their husbands, especially during the wedding/reception, no matter the religion. Talking to the husband is — control issues. Others are totally chill. The real rule is just like going to any other culture or religion or group’s wedding or event — ask your friend for the pointers. You don’t want to show up with bare shoulders in an Italian church, even as a tourist. You could come to my wedding in bare shoulders and a short skirt, I really don’t care.

  3. I would love to purchase a wedding gift for a Mennonite couple but have no idea what to purchase. I do not know the bride and the groom just barely. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thank You.

    • It’s extremely hard to say, because Mennonites are a very, very, broad group.

      I spent most of my life in a city, and many things people assume about Mennonites, that does not apply to me. It depends if people are conservative Mennonites or not, and there are countless variations there.

      It’s a stereotype, but we often do appreciate practical gifts, things that are well made, and useful in everyday life.

      Some people might appreciate an item that is more luxurious than they would buy themselves, (and luxury is very much a relative term here. I emphasize that) but others would not necessarily appreciate it, or could even be offended. Because people are different. It’s not a lot of help, but honestly, my entire comment to this article is that there is no one guide to Mennonite weddings because there is no one type of Mennonite. And so there is no one answer

  4. Comparing Africa to the United States about where most Mennonites live. Is like saying the potato is my favourite fruit.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.