Jewish Newborn Ceremonies 101

Brush up on the basics of newborn ceremonies, from circumcisions to ceremonies for girls.

Baby Ceremonies

What is the purpose of a ceremony of welcome, of covenant, of naming?

Choosing a Name

A review of Jewish practices from the Bible to the present.

Contemporary Issues

The debate about circumcision reflects religious, medical, political and psychological questions.

Interfaith Families

Planning a ceremony when your family is multi-faith or multi-cultural.


Bris Basics

What to know about this ceremony for an eight-day-old Jewish boy.

History of Brit Milah

From the ancient Near East to today.

Why Circumcision?

How Jewish thinkers over the ages have explained the importance of ritual circumcision.

Biblical Origins

The covenant begins when God commands Abraham to circumcise himself and his offspring.

The Mohel

This man or woman on the "cutting edge" of Jewish ritual, performs Judaism's oldest rite.

Ceremonies for Girls

History of Brit Bat

Jewish communities have had many special ways of welcoming baby daughters.


Parents face many choices in preparing a welcoming ceremony and party for their baby girl.

My Daughter’s Baby Naming

A mom gives a behind the scenes look at her daughter's naming ceremony.

Welcoming a Daughter

An interview with the author of "Celebrating Your New Jewish Daughter."

Tradition and Innovation

Combining creativity and a sense of commandedness in new rituals.

A Parent's Difficult Decision

A Difficult Rite

Circumcision reminds us of our partnership with God and the pain of fixing a broken world.

Cruel and Unnecessary?

A conversation about whether the time has come to reconsider the practice of circumcision.

The Circumcision Debate

While Jewish critics have arisen in modern times, brit milah is still widely practiced.

Talking to Kids about Brit Milah

How should parents explain this covenantal rite of passage to their older children?

Covenant of Blood

In this book, Lawrence Hoffman asks why circumcision holds such an important place in the Jewish psyche.