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Sample Sequences of the Birth Ceremony


Return to the Guide to Birth Ceremonies for Interfaith Families.


From Rabbi Brian Field:

  1. Welcome in the Name of the Creator
  2. Welcome/Gathering
  3. Reading of your choice
  4. Discussion of the meaning of the covenant
  5. Covenant of the Five Senses
  6. Naming
  7. Parents speak about the baby's name
  8. Shehecheyanu
  9. Kiddush and Hamotzi

From Lesley Williams:

  1. Welcoming the guests
  2. Welcoming in the Name of the Creator
  3. A Baby is Not Only a Unique New Life
  4. Awakening of the Five Senses
  5. Song: L'chi Lach by Debbie Friedman
  6. Entering the Covenant/Discussion of the meaning of the covenant
  7. Responsive reading on God's love and trust for children
  8. Blessing for child
  9. Naming
  10. Song: Simantov Umazel Tov
  11. Priestly blessing
  12. Shehecheyanu

From Michelle Missner:

  1. Welcoming the child
  2. Blessing of gratitude for health of mother and child
  3. Explanation of baby's name
  4. Presentation of certificate containing name
  5. Expression of hope for the future
  6. Final statements by parents

From Anita Diamant:

  1. Lighting of three candles
  2. Grandparents carry the baby into the room to his/her parents
  3. Explanation of baby's name
  4. Baby is passed from guest to guest, with each person blessing the child
  5. Blessing from a friend
  6. Reading from grandparents

From Rena Mello:

  1. Grandparents pass child to parents
  2. Blessings over the child
  3. Responsive reading
  4. Parents speak about gifts they'd like to give child
  5. Explanation of baby's name
  6. Readings/statements from grandparents (For ideas, see Sample Readings for Ceremonies for Boys and Girls.)
  7. Traditional Jewish song/prayer

From Kathy Lowy (for a child whose naming takes place on the Jewish Sabbath, Friday night, but adaptable for other situations by omitting the first step)

  1. Sabbath candle lighting by mother
  2. Set aside chair for Elijah
  3. Welcoming by father: "Know before whom we stand"
  4. Welcoming by grandparents: Grandparent's Blessing
  5. Shehecheyanu
  6. Reading: Bring Me Good Guarantors
  7. Reading: Children of Happiness
  8. Explanation of baby's name
  9. Reading from Biblical passage explaining child's Hebrew name
  10. Bestowing of Hebrew name (including Traditional Eastern European Naming, Naming.)
  11. Mi Shebeirach
  12. Immersion prayer
  13. Candle lighting by father
  14. Parental blessing by father
  15. Song
  16. Kiddush
  17. Hamotzi

The Guide to Birth Ceremonies for Interfaith Families is also available in PDF or Word formats.

A language of West Semitic origins, culturally considered to be the language of the Jewish people. Ancient or Classical Hebrew is the language of Jewish prayer or study. Modern Hebrew was developed in the late-19th and early 20th centuries as a revival language; today it is spoken by most Israelis.
Hebrew for "my master," the term refers to a spiritual leader and teacher of Torah. Often, but not always, a rabbi is the leader of a synagogue congregation.

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