After years of study, months of planning, weeks of preparation and days of bouts with butterflies, a child ascends the bimah and makes a grand entrance into the Jewish community as a full-fledged member. It's a proud moment. It's a personal accomplishment. But more importantly, it's an affirmation that a young Jewish woman or man has made a commitment to lead a mitzvah-oriented life.
Whether a Jewish wedding is white tie and tails at a five-star hotel, blue jeans and bare feet on a beach or something in between, today's betrothed couples are choosing to custom mix and match the components that come together to form a unique and perfect union.
Selecting an environmental mitzvah project is a good starting point. But consider adding eco-friendly substitutes for white plastic tableware, Styrofoam centerpieces, Mylar balloons and elaborate banners. Are your invitations printed on recycled paper with soy-based inks?
The traditional Jewish wedding ceremony as we know it has evolved over thousands of years. But suddenly, today, in what seems like a nanosecond out of all of recorded Jewish history, couples standing under the chuppah are seeking a whole new script.
It's time to take out the groggers, make some noise and watch the parade of mini Esthers at the local synagogues and Jewish schools.
Am I the only one who goes to Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur services to listen and participate?
Probably not. But why do I feel that way sometimes?
My wedding gown hangs on the rod in the corner of my closet. Although it's sealed in cellophane, the once winter-white dress has lost its luster.
In today's mobile, global society, many Jewish couples are taking their wedding show on the road.
Minnie Marvit stepped up to the bimah in Hawaii to celebrate her Bat Mitzvah. This "girl," however, was a 92-year-old bubbe. "I wanted to do this for some time, but I waited until I moved to Hawaii," she said. "I feel so at home here." Marvit is a member of Congregation Sof Ma'Arav ("The End of the West") in Honolulu, a Conservative synagogue that prides itself on educating "children" and preparing them for b'nai mitzvah.