What do I do at the ceremony?
The following is the flow of the ceremony. I will distribute sheets for everyones’ participation. There are several readings in the form of honors which I will ask you to assign.
In the baby’s room, or bathroom with a counter and good light source, I will do the necessary preparation before the actual circumcision. This will include the "surgical prep” of the genital area. The baby will be placed in a comfortable carrier which will facilitate the procedure. I use the Gomco clamp which is the preferred device by most physicians. It provides for minimum bleeding and promotes a faster healing wound. I also use a nerve block ( just as you get at the dentist). Approximately 15 drops of 1% Lidocaine are injected in the penile area. This acts as a nerve block to the two major sensory nerves, it serves to also reduce discomfort for several hours thereafter. The designated persons will then proceed with the baby to the room for the ceremony. After the baby is placed on the table, the Father recites the following declaration in Hebrew and English:
“Hin’ni muchan umzooman, l’kayam mitzvat asay sh’tzivanu haboray yitborach lamul et b’ni, ka-katuv baTorah, ‘uben shmo-nat yamim yimol kol zachar l’do-ro-tay-chem.’”
“I am here ready to perform the positive precept to circumcise my son, even as the Creator, blessed be He, has commanded us as it is written in the Torah, ‘And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every male throughout your generations.’”
The mother recites the following in English: “And so God commanded Abraham, ‘As for you, you shall keep My Covenant, you and your offspring, throughout the ages . . . You shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin and that shall be a sign of the Covenant between Me and you. At the age of eight days, every male among you throughout the generations shall be circumcised . . . Thus shall my Covenant be marked in your flesh as an everlasting pact.’”
I will have both of these readings on a card on the table where you will be standing.
I will designate the extra chair as the seat of Elijah and the Sondek will the take his or her position on the other chair next to the baby holding its hands or head with the pacifier and sugar water nearby.
It is actually a Jewish father’s responsibility to perform this rite. The mohel as his agent. After a positive experience during the birthing process, many father’s have made the initial incision of the circumcision. It is perfectly safe and I will guide your hand during this gesture. We will then say the opening blessing together, which I have on a card.
“Baruch ata adonai eloheynu melech ha-olam asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al ha-milah.”
“Blessed art Thou O Lord our God Master of the universe, who has hallowed us by thy commandments, and has commanded us on the circumcision.”
After the incision is completed, the parents say:
“Baruch ata adonai eloheynu melech ha-olam asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu l’hach-ni-so biv-ri-to shel Avraham avinu.”
“Blessed art Thou O Lord our God Master of the universe, who has allowed us by thy commandments, and has commanded us to make our sons into the Covenant of Abraham our father.”
Those assembled will respond, followed by several participants whom you will designate to render several readings in the service. I will be completing the final steps in the procedure.
Kiddush is then recited and the baby is named. If you so desire, someone may wish to say who the baby is named for, and a little bit about the person.
It is customary to serve a festive meal, starting with the blessing over the bread. This meal is part of the religious ceremony and should be kosher if meat is served or all dairy if you desire. [ Next ]