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  • Bat Mitzvah Basics

    Here is a guest post by Tali of Your Jewish Speech about the basics of a Bat

     

     

    Mitzvah:

    When a Jewish girl reaches her 12th year, this symbolizes an
    important landmark in her life. As young as she is, according to Jewish law,
    she is now considered part of the adult Jewish community, and she assumes
    responsibility for her own actions as a Jewess. The word “bat” is the Hebrew
    word for “daughter of”, the word “Mitzvah” means “commandments”.
    According to Jewish law, being a Bat Mitzvah (daughter of the commandments)
    means that the Jewish girl now has the privilege of playing a full role in
    Jewish life and should keep the commandments like lighting candles on a Friday
    night, celebrating the festivals and marking the fast days.

    Although Bar Mitzvah celebrations (in a boys 13th year) are
    clearly proscribed, the Bat Mitzvah ceremony is a more modern tradition.  The celebrations tend to vary according to
    ones religious Jewish affiliation. In some communities, the bat mitzvah girl
    will be called up to read from the weekly Torah reading in the synagogue. In
    other communities the Bat Mitzvah occasion will be marked by a ceremony in the
    synagogue, a hall or somewhere else. Sometimes a number of bat mitzvah girls
    will choose to celebrate their bat mitzvah together.

    Often a big celebration party is held after the ceremony is over, and these
    days a lot of time and effort is spent choosing a theme for the party. But
    beyond the party, this landmark occasion is an opportunity for growth and
    affirmed connection to the Jewish community.
    It is a great opportunity for the Bat Mitzvah girl to participate in a
    Mitzvah/Chesed project which reflects the Jewish values of giving time, raising
    money and awareness on behalf of others.
    Other meaningful ways of celebrating can include mother and bat mitzvah
    girl embarking on a Jewish learning program together, or to create a ceremony
    that will involve members of the family and other special people in order to
    emphasize the Jewish chain of generations.

    Written by Tali of Your Jewish Speech

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