Today is April 23, 2017 -
“Bar/Bat Mitzvah” literally means “of Age of Mitzvah,” meaning that a young person is now responsible for the sacred responsibilities of Judaism. He or she publicly accepts the joys and commitments of Jewish adulthood and is held responsible for their actions and take ownership over their beliefs and spiritual life.
During the Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony, the young person typically leads a significant portion of Shabbat services on both Friday night and Saturday morning, is called up for his/her first Aliyah (reciting the blessings before and after the Torah reading), reads from the Torah, chants a Haftarah (a selection from the Book of Prophets), and delivers a D’var Torah (a speech about the Torah portion).
Preparation to become Bar/Bat Mitzvah extends far beyond developing the skills to be exercised on this momentous occasion. A young person will truly be ready to assume the responsibilities of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah only if he/she understands the practices and values of Judaism. As parents, teachers, clergy, and tutors, we work together as a team.