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B'nai Mitzvah
(Bar/Bat Mitzvah)

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Click here to access our
B'nai Mitzvah Planning Guide

Are you ready to celebrate a significant milestone in your child's life while embracing the rich traditions of Judaism? Look no further – Rabbi Brian together with his colleagues offer an inclusive and heartwarming experience tailored for both Jewish and Interfaith families.

At the heart of our B'nai Mitzvah program lies the belief that the B'nai Mitzvah ceremony is a sacred and meaningful rite of passage, regardless of your family's background. Rabbi Brian and his colleagues, Rabbi Dr. Robin Rubinstein and Morah Gwenne Foreman from Coast-to-Coast Lifecycle Events are dedicated to guiding your child through a transformative journey of learning, self-discovery, and connection to their Jewish heritage.

For Jewish families, our program delves into the depth and beauty of Jewish traditions, language, and values. Your child will develop a strong understanding of their heritage, and our interactive lessons will help them master Hebrew, Torah readings, and the spiritual significance of this momentous occasion.

For Interfaith families, our program provides a nurturing environment that respects and celebrates the diverse backgrounds that enrich your lives. We believe that unity can be found in diversity, and our curriculum ensures that both partners and children can actively participate and find personal resonance in the B'nai Mitzvah experience.

bar mitvash

adapted from Rabbi D. Betzel

You are not a Bar/Bat Mitzvah UNTIL you are called to the Torah and recite the Blessings for the Reading of the Torah.
FALSE, technically speaking, according to Halacha, traditional Jewish law, any boy that is 13 years + 1 day old or any girl that is 12 years + 1 day old is a bar or bat mitzvah. According to reform traditions, any child is considered a b’nai mitzvah upon reaching the age of 13.  No ceremony is required. The B’nai Mitzvah service is a celebration of what has already occurred.


B’nai Mitzvah is the term used only when a twin brother and sister are celebrating their Bar and Bat Mitzvah on the same day.
TRUE AND FALSE: This is a tricky one. B’nai Mitzvah is the plural of bar/bat mitzvah and means “children of the commandments.” This plural term is often used when referring to both a Bar and Bat Mitzvah or whenever you are talking about people in the plurality. 


The first Bat Mitzvah in America did not read from the Torah.
FALSE, the first bat Mitzvah in America, Judith Kaplan read from the Torah in both Hebrew and English. 

At the age of 73, it is customary for a person to have a second Bar/Bat Mitzvah.
FALSE, the second b’nai mitzvah is celebrated at the age of 83 because 83 is seventy years following the original B’nai Mitzvah. 70 is considered a full life, plus thirteen is the second b’nai mitzvah.


Ancient Rabbis taught that at the age of 13 a child was mature enough to be responsible for his/her actions.
TRUE. In the 9th Century book Avot, Rabbi Natan claimed that the age of 13 is an age when teens can control their own actions and behavior.

Is it customary for the parents or grandparents to gift the Bar/Bat Mitzvah a tallit? 
TRUE, A tallit is one of the gifts given to the Bar/Bat Mitzvah at the beginning of the service. It is usually the first time the child has worn a Tallit and symbolizes reaching the age of responsibility in Judaism.


The B’nai Mitzvah speech is a practice that first became customary in Europe during the 19th Century.
FALSE, Since the 14th Century, B’nai Mitzvah have given public speeches to commemorate their coming of age in the Jewish community.


According to legend, Abraham is considered to be the first Bar Mitzvah.
TRUE, the Midrash teaches that Abraham was 13 when he rejected his father’s workshop of idols. It was at that age, Abraham realized the difference between right and wrong and took on the responsibility for the Mitzvot / Commandments.

You have to be a member of a Temple or Synagogue to have a Bar/Bat Mitzvah because the ceremony must be in the sanctuary.
FALSE, it is not necessary to be a member of a Temple or Synagogue in order to celebrate your becoming a B’nai Mitzvah.  As a Jew, a B’nai Mitzvah is your birthright.


According to Halacha, Jewish law, a Bar/Bat Mitzvah must be on a Saturday morning.
FALSE, Traditionally, a B’nai Mitzvah took place on any day that the Torah was read in a public setting. Traditionally, the Torah was read on Shabbat and all market days including Monday and Thursday. In addition, many families are also celebrating a B’nai Mitzvah at the end of Shabbat right before the Havdalah service. This is also a beautiful time to have a B’nai Mitzvah. 


In addition to reading from the Torah, it is customary for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah to also read from the Ne’vee’im / Prophets.
TRUE, although by no means required, it is customary for the B’nai Mitzvah to read from the Torah as well as from the Haftorah / Prophets.


Another term used for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah service is “The First Aliyah” – or the first time one is called up to the Bema to recite the Blessings before and after reading the Torah.
TRUE, Many Rabbis prefer to use the term First Aliyah to describe the ceremony celebrating the B’nai Mitzvah since the child is already a Bar/Bat Mitzvah before the service takes place.

I need to have attended Hebrew school for at least 5 years before I can begin studying for my Bar/Bat Mitzvah. 
FALSE, although it is wonderful if a child has had the opportunity to attend Hebrew School for one or more years, it is not a prerequisite to creating a wonderful, meaningful and spiritual B’nai Mitzvah celebration.  In a private tutoring setting, most children are able to learn the prayers and how to chant from the Torah in 6 to 8 months. 

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