Planning Details for a NY/CT Bar or Bat Mitzvah
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by Judy Antell August 26, 2008

   You can get so caught up in planning your celebration that you overlook important steps preparing for the religious service. Here’s a checklist that will help you keep track of them.

One year before
• Your child begins learning the Torah portion for the bar/bat mitzvah.  You may have a meeting with the rabbi or cantor at this time to go over family and synagogue expectations.

Nine months before
• Hire a tutor to help your child prepare. Discuss what parts of the service the child will lead in addition to the Torah and haftarah reading, and start to learn them.

Six months before
• Your child should begin working on a mitzvah project.
• Decide who gets aliyahs and other honors during the service. Let the rabbi know and let the honorees know in case they have to prepare.

Three months before
• Your child should start writing his speech.

Two months before
• Review your child’s speech.
• If your child is doing a candle lighting ceremony, he or she should write this.

Four weeks before
• Write the speech you will deliver to the congregation.