Not Jewish- Capturing 1st Bat Mitzva

Started Aug 25, 2007 | Discussions thread
Jeff Behm Veteran Member • Posts: 3,306
Re: Not Jewish- Capturing 1st Bat Mitzva

RMbA wrote:

Apologies if this is obvious or has already been covered, but I
didn't see anyone mention considerations other than the "simcha"--the
"joyous celebration" or party that follows (often by several hours)
the worship service in which the bar or bat mitzvah leads part of the
liturgy, reads from the Torah, and gives a "sermon" and speech.

Picture-taking during Jewish services is more or less problematic
depending on the branch or movement of Judaism to which the
congregation is affiliated, and the policies of the rabbi and board.
In virtually all instances, flash will not be permitted. In many
instances, any picture-taking is out of bounds. Obviously, the policy
has to be clarified with the rabbi.

My experience reflects this above. I treat them exactly as a wedding, even using the same literature outlines and pricing, changing the key phrases to suit.

The difficulties with the service RmbA describes I get around by doing those shots at the dress rehearsal a day or two before (rabbi's permission). Since I'm not Jewish either, I always ask for detailed guidance from the parents on what they want. We usually set up some key reenactments as well as family portraits, grandparents etc. right there in the synagogue. Retrieving the Torah and reading with Mom & Dad and grandparents over their shoulder are always popular for the bar mitzvah. Be sure all family know to dress for portraits. The few bat mitzvahs I've done have been less traditional, some even having us strictly to the celebrations.

At the celebrations I've attended, there is a candle lighting ceremony that is very important, as is a loaf of ceremonial bread. In our area, missing those is like missing the rings and the kiss at a wedding. Again we often have a special kids table for the bar/bat mitzvah's friends as well as lots of games, all of which need lots of photos, just like the dancing, tarantellas, bouquet/garter ceremonies at a wedding.

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