Becoming a Bar or Bat Mitzvah is a joyous milestone on your child’s journey to Jewish adulthood. Bar/Bat Mitzvah recognizes the achievement of a degree of proficiency in Hebrew and your child’s ability to lead the congregation in worship. At Temple Beth Ami, we emphasize the importance of Jewish learning at all ages, and encourage all children to continue formal Jewish education through Confirmation, high school, and beyond. Our children learn that they are each a vital link in an unbroken chain of Jewish men and women who have studied and cherished the Torah, who understand the wealth of our Jewish heritage, and who recognize the deep spiritual significance of ascending to the reading and blessing of the Torah.
All children become “sons and daughters of the commandment” upon turning thirteen. At Temple Beth Ami, our children are eligible to be called to the Torah as a Bar/Bat Mitzvah on or after his/her thirteenth birthday, according to the secular calendar. Although most families choose to celebrate this occasion publicly at a service in the Temple, it is not mandatory to do so. Some families choose to mark this step in their child’s Jewish education with a trip to Israel and a Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony there. How and where you celebrate this milestone is up to each individual family; the Rabbis or Cantor will be happy to discuss this with you and assist you with your preparations.
In order to begin tutoring for Bar/Bat Mitzvah, each child must have successfully completed four years of Hebrew study, must be attending religious school, and must continue in religious school through eighth grade.