|Baby Blessings||Bat/Bar Mitzvah|
A few months after the birth we would invite you to bring the baby, girl or boy, to the synagogue for a special blessing. The parents can give thanks for the gift of new life and we will publicly celebrate your child and his/her Hebrew name.
It’s a boy! The Synagogue Office can help put you in touch with a mohel for the circumcision. We recommend mohelim who have been trained by the Movement for Reform Judaism. We only use mohelim who are also fully qualified medical doctors.
Bar/Bat Mitzvah literally means “child of the commandment”. The Jewish tradition of the Bar Mitzvah started in the early Middle Ages. It celebrated a boy’s 13th birthday, the first time he was allowed by Jewish Law to read aloud from the Torah in the synagogue service. Today girls celebrate Bat Mitzvah.
The ceremony has developed into a young person’s entry into religious adulthood, when they assume responsibility for the keeping of the commandments. We encourage both girls and boys to celebrate this important stage in their religious lives.
At the Bar or Bat Mitzvah ceremony the young person reads from the Torah and the Haftarah, as well as lead parts of the service.
We also hold adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremonies. Sometimes they are solo, but they can also be shared.
We are always delighted to invite the couple to come and celebrate with the community by holding an ‘aufruf’ (a calling up) on a previous Shabbat. If required, the choir can be asked to participate in the wedding service.
The community also seeks to be present for our members when times are sad and difficult.
All new members and most of our existing membership belong to the Jewish Joint Burial Society which provides insurance to cover the costs of funerals and cremations. We use the services of a Jewish undertaker based in Edgware (Calo’s). They carry out tahara (ritual cleansing) on behalf of the community.
Most burials take place in our cemetery in Weybridge. It is part of the municipal cemetery. A separate portion of our grounds can be used for the burial of non-Jewish partners of our members, provided that the Jewish partner agrees to be buried in the same plot when the time comes.
Cremations are held in any of the local crematoria. Ashes may be interred in the NWSS burial grounds.
The synagogue can also help with shivah prayers held at the family house or sometimes in the synagogue. Some families only wish to hold one night of prayers; others decide to hold the full week. Whatever you decide, the synagogue will try to help at this most difficult of times.