A comprehensive list of important details in planning your child’s bar/bat mitzvah.
Welcome to the next step in your family’s Jewish journey. We are excited to guide you into deeper engagement with the Jewish tradition, people, and faith as your child studies to become Bar or Bat Mitzvah. Beginning in the fall of 2019, we are introducing a few new elements into the preparation process to make this rite of passage even more meaningful for our students and families. Along this path you will have opportunities for one-to-one meetings with our clergy, and joint learning sessions with other B’nei Mitzvah families.
For information about your child’s bar or bat mitzvah, start by contacting:
B’nei Mitzvah Coordinator
212-744-1400 ext. 315
You may call the Membership Office to schedule your service any time after the Labor Day when your child enters third grade. Select a prospective date and time, or have a few dates in mind if you are flexible. Consider recommendations from your child’s secular school; some schools may work to assure that students will not have conflicting service dates and times.
Shortly after selecting a date, you will receive a contract laying out the payment schedule and other details, as well as a document describing musical service options for the afternoon and evening services. Please return the signed contract along with a $1,000 booking fee within 30 days to officially secure your date and time.
Your child must be continuously enrolled in our Religious School in order to confirm and maintain a date.
Options for Consideration
At Emanu-El, we strive to provide each family with a meaningful and personal Bar/Bat Mitzvah experience. Each child at Temple Emanu-El has their own individual service, and we offer options to further personalize the ceremony.
The differences between morning and afternoon or evening services at Emanu-El:
(open to the community)
|10:30 AM||Fifth Avenue Sanctuary||Torah and Haftarah are read||Classical service|
(Includes choir and organ at no charge)
|Livestream/Video and video services included|
|Afternoon or Evening Service|
|12:30 PM or|
|Fifth Avenue Sanctuary or Beth-El Chapel||Torah is read, but not Haftarah||Contemporary and classical service options available depending on time and location (at an additional cost)||Livestream/Video available at an additional cost|
The Year Prior to Becoming a Bar or Bat Mitzvah
About 15 months before your child’s Bar or Bat Mitzvah, our B’nei Mitzvah coordinator will reach out to schedule an introductory meeting with a member of our clergy. The B’nei Mitzvah-to-be and at least one parent must attend. The rabbi or cantor you meet with at this time may or may not be the clergy who officiates during the Bar or Bat Mitzvah.
During the year of preparation, the student and at least one parent are expected to attend three B’nei Mitzvah seminars taught by our clergy. An important goal of the seminars is to examine the ritual of B’nei Mitzvah holistically: To learn what creates a Shabbat worship experience, what it means to become a Bar or Bat Mitzvah, and to discuss the Jewish values that inform our religious identity. The first session will guide the families through the service and will serve as an introduction to the tutoring process. At the second, the student will begin writing a d’var Torah (which literally means “word of Torah” and is also known as the “sermon”). At the final session, all students will have the opportunity to practice their sermons from the bimah.
After attending the first seminar, your child will begin the nine-month-long tutoring process. They will attend 60 minutes of group tutoring once a week for six months. This program will then culminate in three months of one-to-one 20-minute tutoring meetings with our cantors. At the completion of these meetings, all students will meet with our clergy for three final rehearsals.
|Within 30 days of the booking date||$1,000 – Deposit returned with a signed contract|
|1 year prior to the scheduled date||$1,325 – Balance of Bar/Bat mitzvah fees billed
Consider whether you wish to host a Kiddush after your child’s ceremony (for morning/afternoon services only)
$1,000 – 50% of the group tutoring fee, billed when tutoring begins
Four months after group tutoring begins, $1,000 (the remaining 50% of the group tutoring fee) will be billed
|3 months prior to the scheduled date||Balance of membership dues, Religious School tuition, and Bar/Bat mitzvah fees due
$450-$2,200 – Music package add-on fee billed (for afternoon/evening services only)
$400 – Livestream/video fee billed (for afternoon/evening services only)
|1 month prior to the scheduled date||Balance of music package and livestream/video fees due
Balance of Kiddush fees due
- Membership dues and all fees, including Religious School tuition, must be paid in full three months prior to the Bar/Bat Mitzvah date.
- Any child becoming bar or bat mitzvah at Congregation Emanu-El must be continuously enrolled in the Religious School in order to confirm and maintain a date.
- The Bar/Bat Mitzvah fee includes the Friday Night Oneg Shabbat reception, which follows the Friday Shabbat Service on the evening before your child becomes a bar or bat mitzvah. Your family will be honored at this service, and our clergy looks forward to celebrating with you then.
A date for a Bar or Bat Mitzvah service may now be scheduled for students enrolled in Religious School beginning in 3rd grade.