September 10, 2016
What is a bar mitzvah?
On this day, Noah will assume the ethical, religious and spiritual responsibilities that come with being a Jewish adult by becoming a bar mitzvah. Translated, word for word, bar mitzvah means "son of the commandments." What the term means in Judaism is someone who is obligated to follow the commandments. This automatically occurs when a boy turns 13 and a girl turns 12, and while no special observance is needed, the practice of having a bar mitzvah ceremony became popular in the Middle Ages. Bat mitzvah ceremonies began occurring more recently, the first one recorded in North America in 1922. Today the bar/bat mitzvah ceremony has become an important and significant life cycle event for many Jewish boys and girls.
The centerpiece of the celebration will be when Noah has his very first aliyah; the first time he will be permitted to ascend the bima and recite the blessings over the Torah on behalf of the congregation. He will also chant part of this week’s Torah portion.
While Noah's bar mitzvah marks a significant turning point in his life, it is the beginning of what we hope will be a lifelong commitment to Jewish living and learning.
We look forward to sharing this special event ("simchah") with you!
You can read more about bar mitzvah traditions here: