Sign In Forgot Password

Bar mitzvah

What is a Bar Mitzvah?

What is its origin in Jewish tradition? What is its significance? The Torah makes it clear that only an ish - an adult - is bound by the rules of the Torah. But what is an ish - at what age does a child become an adult? In the book of Genesis (34:25) we read that the two sons of Yaakov, Shimon and Levi, ...took each man his sword... According to Rabbinic tradition, Levi was 13 years old at that time and the Torah refers to him as an ish - a man, an adult.

For a boy, his thirteenth birthday is the time when his Divine soul, present from birth, becomes fully functional. The thirteenth birthday (twelve for a girl) obviously follows the Jewish (lunar) calendar. At this age, one reaches intellectual maturity. Therefore, on the day he turns 13, a boy becomes Bar Mitzvah - a son of the commandment - meaning that in the eyes of Jewish law he has now come of age. From now on he is subject to all the obligations as well as all the privileges of an adult. At most Shuls, including Sydenham, the formal Bar Mitzvah is scheduled for a Shabbat after the thirteenth birthday, occasionally some weeks after it.

The theme of Bar Mitzvah, is therefore, assuming responsibility for one's Jewish and general conduct. If you feel the need for a theme for the party at all, this is it. There is no need to introduce any other themes into what is, essentially, a Jewish religious milestone.

A Barmitzvah is a wonderful window of opportunity for family growth; particularly in the area of our Jewishness. Rabbi Yehuda Stern will be only too happy to discuss this with you at your convenience. Feel free to call for an appointment.

We also offer our very own teacher, Jonty Cohen, kindly call to arrange an appointment at your convenience. 

Click below to read more information on Bar Mitzvah's:

Click here to book for your son's Bar Mitzvah.

Sun, 14 July 2024 8 Tammuz 5784