Life Cycle Celebrations
In addition to holidays and religious observances celebrated throughout the Jewish year, families may wish to have a blessing or celebration to mark a Jewish life cycle event or a milestone such as an anniversary, birthday, or travel. Rockdale Temple is the place to celebrate special moments and make them sacred.
In the Jewish tradition, having children is not only a primary religious obligation; it is to be one of the sources of happiness in life. The arrival of a new Jewish baby has always been greeted with delight, ceremony, and a wealth of customs.
Brit Milah, the covenant of circumcision, is the oldest continuous Jewish rite, a ritual that unites Jews throughout all ages. Taking place on the eighth day following the birth of a baby boy, this ancient ceremony announces the parents’ commitment to taking on the responsibilities and joys of raising a child according to the terms of the contract between God and the Jews.
Brit Bat, the act of welcoming infant daughters to this historic relationship, does the same with words and rituals.
To schedule a Brit ceremony, please contact the Rabbi. There are many options available to you for the location:
- Your home
- The hospital
- Rockdale Temple
- During a worship service on Friday night or Saturday morning
- Rabbi Coran or Rabbi Kahan’s study
Rabbi Coran and Rabbi Kahan will help you decide on the appropriate time and place for your special ceremony. We look forward to celebrating with you.
During the festival of Simchat Torah, we celebrate as a community the beginning of formal Jewish education of our youngest Temple members. The evening of celebration begins with a dinner for the entire family and continues on the Bimah as the students receive their very own Torah scroll and gifts from the congregation. Our consecrants have the opportunity to demonstrate the beginnings of their Jewish knowledge by leading our community in reciting the Shema, and are central to our music-filled celebration of Simchat Torah.
Contact the Assistant Rabbi & Educator for more information.
Bar and Bat Mitzvah really means. . . “Old enough to be responsible for the Mitzvot.” Mitzvot are the commandments that a Jew does in order to not only live a Jewish life, but also to sanctify life.” —Rabbi Jeffrey K. Salkin, Putting God on the Guest List.
The celebration of becoming an adult in the Jewish community is a joyful one at Rockdale Temple. The ceremony itself is the result of study in our religious school, family education classes and exploration into the meaning of the milestone, and private study and conversation with Rabbi Coran. The Bar or Bat Mitzvah leads a Shabbat service and is called to the Torah in honor of his/her commitment to a Jewish future. The service celebrates both his/her individual accomplishment and communal values.
Students who are in good standing in our Religious School program and who have achieved the equivalent of three years of Hebrew proficiency are eligible to become Bar/Bat Mitzvah at Rockdale Temple.
Rockdale Temple encourages all of our Religious School students to continue their studies at KULANU: the Cincinnati Reform Jewish High School. We celebrate Confirmation in the tenth grade. Rabbi Coran teaches Confirmation Class, which includes a class trip to Washington, DC and exploration of belief and action within the Jewish tradition. The Confirmation experience concludes when our Confirmands affirm their commitment to Judaism during a beautiful Shabbat service written and led by the class.
Conversion to Judaism is a significant act of personal religious commitment, and those who choose to become Jews are welcomed into our congregation. Those interested in the possibility of conversion are encouraged to meet with one of our rabbis. A course of study will be laid out for that individual, including the community “Introduction to Judaism” class.
The Jewish wedding is a holy and joyous time. Our Rabbis enjoy working with couples to make each wedding a meaningful celebration. Couples who are members (or children of members) of Rockdale Temple are invited to be married in our warm and beautiful chapel. The Rabbis will work with non-members who wish to be married in another location. Couples should contact one of our rabbis for an appointment and to set a wedding date.
Families wishing to celebrate significant wedding anniversaries should contact Rabbi Coran. This celebration can take place in the synagogue or another appropriate location. The congregation also celebrates the anniversaries of all congregants married in a particular month during one of the Shabbat evening services of that month.
“May God comfort you among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.”
When death is imminent, families and friends need comfort, support, care, and guidance, which our Temple community can provide. The time of bereavement is difficult. Personal rabbinic guidance is available to help families organize their plans and prepare. At the time of death please notify Rockdale immediately at 513-891-9900. Funeral services, shivah minyans, and unveilings are scheduled directly with our Rabbis.