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  • Bat Mitzvah Lessons

    Bat Mitzvah

    Becoming a Bat Mitzvah is a milestone in a young girl’s life. It is the point where a girl is considered responsible for the consequences of her actions. While the decision to mark this transition from childhood to young adulthood has remained intact over the years, Jewish communities have created specific requirements and celebrations that reflect these core values.

    As Jews, we continue to create new ways of celebrating the coming of age that are inspired and responsive to the needs of our community. We want to recognize this important passage in the lives of our daughters in ways that reflect our traditions while being consistent with our beliefs. We believe that Jewish history and experience teach meaningful contemporary lessons about ethics, history, culture, community and personal responsibility.

    Thirteen year old young adults can respond to more challenging tasks than were expected of them as children. They can demonstrate greater independence and depth of thought, competence and commitment. So, a girl reaching 13 and becoming a Bat Mitzvah marks, not the beginning of actual adulthood, but the beginning of her journey which includes a period of searching for one’s identity and life’s path.

    A Bat Mitzvah service provides for parental and public encouragement and recognition of the development of these capacities on the road to maturity. It signifies a young person’s desire to become more responsible for her own decisions and actions and to identify with many previous generations of Jewish girls who have done so. For Jews, Bat Mitzvah means “Daughter of Responsibility,” indicating the readiness of the young girl to take on the obligation of living by an ethical code of values.

    The ceremony that the Jewish family participates in is inspired by the new practices that continue to develop out of the richness of the Jewish experience. The community celebrates the Bat Mitzvah with the family, essentially saying to the young woman that all we cherish and all that we hope for, we place in your hands and may God give you the will and the strength to carry on the traditions of our mothers and fathers and pass them on to your children and your children’s children.

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