Connecting Bar/Bat Mitzvah to Confirmation
Bar/Bat Mitzvah is a step along the path of Jewish life, not a conclusion. Becoming a Bar/Bat Mitzvah means accepting the obligation for continuing Jewish study. Confirmation is the next life-cycle step along that path of life-long Jewish study. Confirmation helps cement the commitment to Jewish life and study made through celebrating a Bar/Bat Mitzvah.
What is Confirmation?
Confirmation appeared in the early 19th Century as part of the beginnings of Reform Judaism. Originally, Confirmation was a substitute for Bar Mitzvah, since it was thought that early teenagers were not old enough to fully understand their Jewish obligations. Confirmation students of 16 or 17 were thought more able to make a serious commitment to Judaism. Today, we celebrate both Bar and Bat Mitzvah at 13 and Confirmation in 10th grade as celebrations of Jewish identity and commitment. Our 10th grade students are more able to pursue intellectual, personal, and communal aspects of Jewish identity and thus lead the congregation on Shavuot, as that Festival celebrates the Giving of Torah.
Confirmation and NextGen: The Millie and Alvin Blum 8th-12th grade Teen Program