Planning for the Bar Mitzvah DateA bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah is a special occasion being celebrated by Jewish families. This event is observed as a girl turns 12 years old and as a boy reaches the age of 13. It is during this period when a child accepts his adult responsibilities in accordance with the Jewish law and religion.
Parents as well as the child himself play important roles in the bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah process. Parents are responsible for preparing their child in his religious study and in performing certain tasks during the religious Shabbat service. The child, for his part, needs to prepare himself for his religious education while at the same time attending his regular school. The education process is vital in order for the celebrant to gain a deeper understanding of his moral and spiritual obligations as an adult.
Planning and preparing for this celebration can be done as early as a year or two years before the event. Parents have a lot of things to keep them busy planning all the details during this timeframe.
One of the first things that need to be considered is the date of the bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah event. Preferences for a date and time of the celebration may only be finalized after getting a confirmation from the officiating religious leader.
Choosing a date and time for the bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah should be done as soon as possible. Dates are usually taken quickly so the sooner you book the better. Itís best to consult with your synagogue and a rabbi. Itís also recommended to book the synagogue as soon as a date is finalized by the family.
At about 10 to 12 months before the event, the child has to enroll in bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah classes at the synagogue of the congregation where his family belongs. If your child is not currently taking up Hebrew classes, you may enroll him or her in a study program or get a private tutor who can teach your child at least once a week. Parents may then look for a rabbi who is suited for their familyís style.
If youíre getting a tutor for your child, that same person can already teach the rituals involved in the worship service such as reading or singing portions from the Torah and leading certain parts of the religious ceremony. Make sure that you get a competent teacher who can help your child succeed in this very important and once-in-a-lifetime endeavor. It is vital that the childís confidence is developed during his study to ease any nervous feelings during the actual ceremony when he speaks in front of a large congregation.
For families planning a trip to Israel for their childís bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah celebration, itís best to schedule it during the summer when children are off from school. In this way, parents and children do not have to worry about classes and going back to their home right away.
As always, early planning is essential for any celebration. With an attitude like this plus putting your good organizational skills at work, preparing for this momentous event will surely be less stressful.
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