Life Cycle Events - BAR/BAT MITZVAH
Bar/Bat Mitzvah is a religious term that implies a coming of age. These words mean “subject to the commandment” and imply that the person at this age is no longer treated as a minor by Jewish law, but as an adult. If new religious privileges and rights are now extended to him or her, it is because he or she assumes full responsibility in the observance of all Jewish precepts and commandments.
A boy reaches his religious maturity on his thirteenth birthday according to the Hebrew calendar; a girl reaches her religious maturity on her twelfth birthday according to the Hebrew calendar. To mark this religious turning point in the life of a Jewish child, it is customary to provide him or her with an opportunity to publicly fulfill a mitzvah not previously extended to him or her. This usually takes the form of being called up to Torah for a reading, since the occasion is celebrated in the synagogue. The custom has become widespread for the celebrant to be called up for the final Aliyah (maftir) which includes the reading of a section from the prophets (Haftarah.)
The obligations and customs associated with becoming a Bar/Bat Mitzvah vary among Jewish congregations. At Temple Beth RIshon, both boys and girls celebrate their Bar or Bat Mitzvah at the age of thirteen. Visit our Bar/Bat Mitzvah page which offers essential information to help you to navigate the steps leading you up to this special day!