Presentation on theme: "Beginning the Journey: Preparing for your Bar/Bat Mitzvah Session 1: Getting Started Rabbi Salomon Gruenwald Congregation Hebrew Educational Alliance 303-758-9400."— Presentation transcript:
Beginning the Journey: Preparing for your Bar/Bat Mitzvah Session 1: Getting Started Rabbi Salomon Gruenwald Congregation Hebrew Educational Alliance 303-758-9400 firstname.lastname@example.org
Today’s Goals Overview of the Curriculum History and Context of Bar/Bat Mitzvah The Bar/Bat Mitzvah Team Approach Making your Bar/Bat Mitzvah a Meaningful Experience Starting to Learn your Parsha
Course Overview Session 1 (11/14) – Introduction, Forming your TeamSession 2 (12/5)– You and Your FamilySession 3 (1/9) – Torah Part 1: Interpreting Your ParshaFebruary 12 – Mincha/Maariv Workshop Service (4pm)Session 4 (2/27) – Torah Part 2: Giving a D’var TorahSession 5 (4/10) – Understanding PrayerSession 6 (5/15) – Mitzvah Projects
Course Objectives Involve the whole family Gain skill in reading and interpreting Torah Learn how to write and give a d’var Torah Deepen appreciation for the Shabbat services Strengthen ties to Jewish community and values Create lasting and meaningful memories
Bar: Aramaic for “Son” (Hebrew: Ben). Bat: Hebrew for “Daughter” Mitzvah: Commandment
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? No mention of “bar mitzvah” in the Torah Earliest clue is in the Mishna (200 CE): At five, one should study Scripture At ten, one should study Mishna At thirteen, one is ready to do mitzvot At fifteen, one is ready to study Talmud At eighteen, one is ready for the Huppah At twenty, for providing for a family… (Pirkei Avot, 5:21)
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? Jews started making celebrations around bar mitzvah in medieval Spain. In recognition of a young man’s new status, he was honored with an aliyah to the Torah shortly after his 13 th birthday. The practice spread through communities in Europe and beyond.
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? Jews in America embraced bar mitzvah as a celebration of Jewish identity and personal achievement.
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? In modern culture, becoming an adult means claiming privileges and liberties. It is also about being legally responsible for your own actions. It is a point of arrival
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? In Jewish culture, becoming an adult is a process that begins at 13. It means taking on new obligations and duties Being counted in a minyan Reading from the Torah Leading services Fasting Performing mitzvot
What is a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? The Mishna (Avot 1:2) says: The World rests upon three pillars: Torah Worship (Avodah) Acts of Kindness (Gimmilut Hessed) On the day you celebrate becoming a bar/bat mitzvah, you will demonstrate a commitment to adult Jewish responsibilities in 3 ways: Torah = Reading from the Torah and teaching Torah Avodah = Leading a community in prayer Hessed = Your “Mitzvah Project”
Bat Mitzvah According to the Talmud, a girl also takes on responsibility for the mitzvot when she turns 12. In the middle ages, some communities held modest parties to celebrate a girl coming of age. The first bat mitzvah ceremony in the US took place in 1922. Judith Kaplan Eisenstein – daughter of Mordechai Kaplan (founder of Reconstructionist Judaism). Today in most non-Orthodox synagogues, bat mitzvahs are identical to bar mitzvahs.
Making Your Bar/Bat Mitzvah More Meaningful: The Team Approach “By defining goals and expectations at this point, you can prevent disappointment and chaos by establishing the clarity and mutual understanding needed to sustain a joyful, thought-provoking, and satisfying experience for all who are involved.” Rabbi Goldie Milgram, author of Making Your Bar/Bat Mitzvah
Expectations and Concerns What emotions do you expect and hope to experience along the way to and on the day of your bar/bat mitzvah service? Brainstorm … don ’ t over-think this. Write down whatever comes to mind.