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Please visit our Online Services and COVID-19 pages for current info. We will mark the end of the COVID emergency with our community event, Hashiveinu: A Celebration of Return on Sunday, August 8.

B'nai Mitzvah

A Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebration is one of the biggest occasions in a young person’s life. At Shearith Israel, we believe the primary focus for the Bar/Bat Mitzvah should be the learning, study and preparation that is the foundation of their adult Jewish Education. 

Learn about our B'nai Mitzvah workshop series for students and their parents on the Journey to Adulthood (J2A) webpage:

J2A B'nai Mitzvah Workshop Program



We are looking forward to celebrating your family's special occasion at Shearith Israel. Due to the need for physical distancing, at this time, a new set of COVID protocols have been implemented in order for us to gather safely amidst the pandemic. Click the button below for our B'nai Mitzvah coronavirus protocol.  

B'nai Mitzvah COVID Protocol


Congregation Shearith Israel Mission 

Congregation Shearith Israel connects people to meaningful living through Judaism

Congregation Shearith Israel Vision

Our congregation is rooted in Conservative Judaism and committed to egalitarianism. Relationships are at the center of everything we do: we educate children and adults in Jewish values, Hebrew language and the continuing story of our people; we elevate our spirits and feel God's presence through prayer experiences; we embrace our covenantal responsibility to comfort all who are suffering, and celebrate each other's joy.


B'nai Mitzvah guide 

Please scroll down and/or visit the links below for complete information on how Shearith Israel looks forward to supporting you and your family in this meaningful journey as your child(ren) becomes a Bar/Bat Mitzvah.

The coming of age ritual of B’nai Mitzvah captures all the elements of our mission and vision.  The purpose of this handbook is to guide your family through the B’nai Mitzvah process at Shearith Israel, with practical resources, and answers to common questions. 

We hope that you keep this webpage and associated links handy, and refer to it often as you celebrate this milestone with your Shearith Israel community.

This 2021 edition is a major overhaul to previous versions, and includes a special addendum to reflect the current practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. These guidelines in particular are subject to frequent adjustment, as we learn more about the disease and work together with our medical team to create a meaningful and safe experience.  

Expectations of Our Families & Students

Your Family's Support Team and Their Roles (Staff, Tutors, etc.)

Description of Shabbat Morning Services + Honors / Gabbai Sheet

Parents' Blessing / Blessing the Torah / Prayers

Creating the Sacred Space

Eating Together / Meals / Approved Caterers

Things to Know (Deliveries, Invitations, Photos, Bio, etc.)


Countdown to the Big Day: a quick guide to important dates

About 2.5 Years In Advance:

  • A list of available dates will be made available for families to indicate preferences.
  • The Director of Congregational Learning will assign dates, taking all relevant factors into consideration.

12-24 months in Advance

  • Choose your tutor and begin sessions to establish and work toward goals.
  • Be a member in good financial standing of Shearith Israel and be current in all financial obligations for one year prior to holding a Bar or Bat Mitzvah at Shearith Israel. If your family is new to Shearith Israel or you have concerns about this requirement, contact the Executive Director at 404-503-9905.
  • Regularly attend services at Congregation Shearith Israel   

6-12 Months In Advance

Order Kippot

Many families choose to provide kippot for their guests and/or the congregation on the occasion of the Bar or Bat Mitzvah.

Contact the Executive Director about Kiddush, logistics and room set up.

Contact the Executive Director three months before your simcha. When choosing an outside caterer, please use the list provided; although other Kosher caterers can and will be approved.

1 Month In Advance

Email your B'nai Mitzvah Program to the Executive Assistant ( for approval prior to printing.

Your family will receive a return email with any corrections. Once you have made the corrections, please resubmit for approval. If you need samples, please contact the Executive Assistant.

Email Aliyot/Honors Form to the Executive Assistant.

Click here for a list of all of the honors that are available to your family for that Shabbat and examples of B'nai Mitzvah Gabbai Sheets. Email a list of your honorees to

The week of the Simcha          

Drop off any Kippot, flowers, candy, and programs before12:00pm the Friday before simcha.

FlowersThe decorations on the bima are permanent and may be utilized by any family. If you wish to purchase fresh flowers or use bima baskets from JF&CS for your simcha, you must make arrangements to have them delivered to the synagogue by Friday at 12:00 p.m. prior to the synagogue office closing.

CandyIt is customary during the service to throw candy at the Bar or Bat Mitzvah to wish the child a sweet life. Candy must be dropped off by Friday at Noon – remember, NO CHOCOLATE. The baskets will be provided by the synagogue. “Sunkist Fruit Gems” are the preferred type of candy.


Whom to Contact

Rabbinic Questions (D’var Torah, Services, Etc.)

Rabbi Kaiman - / 404-503-9910

Educational Requirements          

Nancy Gorod - / 404-503-9906

To Reserve Social Hall and/or Kitchen; Financial Questions

Jodi Salomon - / 404-503-9905

Administrative/Scheduling Meetings with Rabbi Kaiman

Adam Klein - / 404-503-9914


It is with great pleasure that we have shared this guide with you. This is an exciting time in the life of your family and we look forward to sharing in the joy as you plan and prepare for your simcha. Please remember that Shearith Israel is never more than a phone call or an email away. We wish you a Mazal Tov as your child reaches this meaningful milestone!

Thu, July 29 2021 20 Av 5781