Although circumcision has been practiced in different cultures for over three thousand years, in Judaism this act has taken on special significance and represents bringing a child into the divine covenant between God and the Jewish people.
Descriptions of circumcisions can be found in the Bible. In Genesis 17:9-13, God instructs Abraham to circumcise male children on the eighth day throughout the generations.
According to Jewish tradition, it is a parent’s obligation to circumcise a son and offer a threefold blessing for the child: a life enriched by Torah, the wedding canopy (chuppah), and good deeds. Today, a mohel or mohelet is routinely designated by parents to fulfill this custom.
In some cases where this custom hasn’t been upheld in its derived intent, there are other types of berit mila ceremonies to bring a person into the covenant, which include the following:
All Reform mohalim/ot are licensed medical practitioners that have been certified by the Reform Movement after being trained by the Berit Mila Program of Reform Judaism in the history and the customs of this rite.
Life Cycle Events
The Torah commands us to circumcise our newborn sons on the eight day of their new lives. This powerful ceremony celebrates new life, and also brings our sons into Judaism’s sacred covenant. Rabbi’s Stone & Smith can put you in touch with a Mohel (ritual circumciser),help the parents understand the ceremony, and co-officiate, along with the Mohel.
Baby Naming/Simchat Bat
We celebrate the great blessing of a newborn daughter with a ceremony that brings her into the covenant, and confers upon her a Hebrew name. Rabbi Smith and Rabbi Stone can help you think through and design this ceremony, which can take place either at home, or at the synagogue, on a Shabbat, or any day the Torah is read (Monday, Thursday, Festivals, Rosh Chodesh).
Bar/Bat Mitzvah students are moving from childhood to adulthood, from learning to be responsible to being responsible. As son or daughter of the commandments, you commit yourself to be proud membership in our ancient people.
Rabbi Stone and Rabbi Smith can help you prepare for this wonderful, joyous occasion, by teaching bride and groom the meaning of the ceremony, from Ketubah (marriage document), to Kiddushin (Engagement) to Huppah (Marriage Canopy) to Nissuin (marriage ceremony) to breaking the glass. We also counsel you, offering Jewish wisdom in preparation for a life dedicated to love and companionship. We also work with you in designing the ceremony, providing our knowledge and experience.
Our tradition offers several powerful end of life rituals – Kriah (tearing of a garment), Levayah (funeral procession), Hesped (eulogy), Kevurah (burial) and Shivah (seven days of mourning). Rabbi Smith and Rabbi Stone will instruct you on these and other rituals. We can also perform the funeral ceremony, and help you understand and implement other meaningful Jewish mourning practices.
SPONSORING A KIDDUSH
Whether you are interested in sponsoring a basic Kiddush or a full Kiddush luncheon, our staff can assist you with all the preparations! Please contact us for more information!