|Angel Orensanz, NYC|
I remember years ago flying to Boston for a relative’s Bat Mitzvah. I was very excited to be invited. I would like to tell you that the service was lovely, however, the service lacked personality and depth. Furthermore, it was quite evident that the Rabbi did not know anything about the families of either of the 2 children standing on the Bima that day.
I left that service appalled and clear on one thing: discovering ways to make the Bar/Bat Mitzvah service a personal experience for my family and my clients. So when I came home I completely immersed myself into discovering ways to make this day meaningful and memorable.
Try writing your own prayer book. I know this sounds daunting however, it is not as hard today to make that happen. There are a number of services throughout the country that can help you with this task. Infuse the book with information. You would be surprised at how many people do not know what it means to become a Bar Mitzvah. Explain the rituals and meanings behind the prayers.
You can also enhance your service by including readings for various members of your family or close friends. If you have lost a loved one like a Grandparent invite the grandchildren to the Bima for the reading of the Kaddish. Maybe provide a special poem or prayer for them to read during this time. The more involved you make your guests feel the more they want to celebrate with you.
If your child is talented musically have them showcase this during the service. Pick an appropriate piece of music for them to perform. Perhaps you can find something that ties in with their Torah portion and ask your Rabbi for help.
I have always thought that Judaism is a religion based on community and involvement. So take this day to embrace your guests and include them in this experience.
Dear Reader, Have you ever been to a service that moved you? Let me know. I would like to hear your stories. I am always looking for new ways to make a child’s Bar/Bat Mitzvah more meaningful.
Every week for almost a year I have been writing about topics that I think you may find interesting. Handing our information that I think would help you. But, I would love to hear from you. What do you want to learn about? What is the one biggest obstacle you are facing today as you are planning your wedding, or trying to decide if you want to become engaged?
Let me know I would love to help you in the journey and write about what it is you want to read.
Thanks for this opportunity to be of service.
Grace, Gratitude and Happy Planning
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