It was my turn again on the Rabbis Without Borders blog on My Jewish Learning.

I’ve been thinking a lot about bar/bat mitzvah recently, about what it means to kids and families and how I as a rabbi am responsible in part for crafting an experience that helps make meaning. The performative aspect is one part that I have become more suspect of, and this blog post is reflects some of what I have been thinking. I hope to write more about communal expectations and how we “do” bar/bat mitzvah at a later date.

The One Thing We Need to Stop Saying to our Kids at their Bar or Bat Mitzvah


3 responses to “The One Thing We Need to Stop Saying to our Kids at their Bar or Bat Mitzvah”

  1. charlene healy Avatar
    charlene healy

    thank you for being a part of my family


  2. Martha Avatar

    This is an important conversation. Maybe a small change would be for us to begin using different language when we talk about the coming of age in Jewish life. Most everyone talks about “having” a bar/bat mitzvah, as if it were the ceremony itself that is significant. Certainly being called to the Torah for the first time is highly significant. But ultimately, I think, it is the “becoming” (an adult; increasingly responsible, etc.) that holds significance. “Becoming” which hopefully continues Jewishly for one’s entire life!


    1. Rabbi360 Avatar

      Martha, thanks for your wonderful comment. I agree, “having” isn’t the best term. The ceremony recognizes what one “becomes.”


Thanks for continuing the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: