B’Mitzvah Training for Children and Adults

What a joy it is to become a b’mitzvah, to be formally welcomed into the community of Judaism!

I work with children and adults to become b’nai mitzvah, the Hebrew plural form of bar/bat mitzvah.

I was honored to teach a grandfather to enable him to become a bar mitzvah at the Kotel, the Wailing Wall, in Jerusalem. A couple of years later, his son told me that his son wanted to become a bar mitzvah and that he wanted to learn alongside him. At the bar mitzvah, all three generations came up for aliyot, the blessings prayed before and after the Torah reading. What joy!

Photos courtesy of Chris Paulis Photography, Gina Swanberg

Jewish Prayer Services

Students learn about the structure of the Jewish morning service, both Shabbat and weekday; some Jewish history based in the student’s own unique interests; and what Medieval and contemporary commentators have said about their Torah portion.

They learn to chant their Torah portion, to write and deliver their own commentary on it, and to lead as much of the service as they choose.

Torah Chanting and Reading Hebrew

As part of the preparation process, students learn to read the Hebrew words of prayers and Torah.

Students learn to pray prayers as a way of connecting to the great Mystery that is bigger than all of us.

Online B’Mitzvah Training

I have taught in dining rooms and online. I have taught people with no Hebrew or some Hebrew background. I have prepared a bar mitzvah who chanted Torah in Jerusalem without me and a bat mitzvah who chanted Torah hundreds of miles away from her and my homes with me leading the service.

Whether I only get to see the pictures afterwards or I am involved in the ritual experience, it is always a joy to teach and learn Torah with new people.