Hatafat Dam Brit Ritual Circumcision
Jewish Circumcisions Brisses
Richard Fraser MD · Westwood, MA · 781 - 690 - 1339 (voice) · 775 - 703 - 1031 (fax)
The Covenant of Brit Milah,
Service for the Bris and the Jewish Circumcision (Milah)
This ritual circumcision/Jewish circumcision is conducted on the eighth day as noted in Genesis 17:12 the portion of the Torah discussing Brit Milah/the Bris/ritual circumcision:
Rabbi Henry Zoob, now Rabbi Emeritus and myself at the recent dedication of our addition to Temple Beth David, Westwood, MA
The Mohel/Moyel begins the Bris/Brit Milah service:
May he who comes be blessed.
The rite of circumcision has been enjoined upon us as a sign of our covenant with God,
As it is written: And God said to Abraham: You shall keep My covenant, you and your children after you. He who is eight days old shall keep the covenant of circumcision, every male throughout your generations.
We recall the prophetic promise that one day the sign of our covenant with God will be imprinted upon our hearts and the hearts of our children, as well as upon our flesh, so that we may rise to the selfless love of God, and therein find life. May we, like our father Abraham, obey the commandment of God: Walk before Me, and reach for perfection.
Joyfully do we present our son for the covenant of circumcision (Bris/Brit Milah).
The Mohel/Moyel continues:
Lord, You established a testimony in Jacob, You set a Teaching in Israel, commanding our ancestors to make them known to their children; that the generations to come - children yet
unborn - might know them.
You are for ever mindful of Your covenant, the word You commanded for a thousand generations: the covenant You made with Abraham; Your sworn promise to Isaac; the commitment You made to Jacob, Your everlasting covenant with Israel.
THE COVENANT OF BRIS/BRIT MILAH
O give thanks to the Lord, who is good, whose love is everlasting.
Mohel/Moyel or a Parent
Blessed is the Lord our God, Ruler of the universe, by whose Mitzvot we are hallowed, who has given us the Mitzvah of Brit Milah
and the performance of the circumcision (Milah).
The Circumcision (Milah) is performed
Baruch ata, Adonai Eloheinu, melech haolam, asher kideshanu bemitsvotav vetsivanu lehachniso bverito shel Avraham avinu.
Blessed is the Lord our God, Ruler of the universe, by whose Mitzvot we are hallowed, who commands us to bring our sons into the covenant of Abraham.
Mohel/Moyel or Leader of the Bris/Brit Milah Ceremony
Blessed is the Lord our God, Ruler of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine.
Jewish Naming Ceremony during the Brit Milah Service and following the circumcision:
Our God and God of our people, sustain this child and let him be known in the House of Israel as.... May he bring much joy to his parents in the months and years to come. As he has entered into the covenant of Abraham, so may he enter into the study of Torah, the blessing of marriage, and the practice of goodness.
May the One who blessed our fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, bless this child and keep him from all harm. May his parents rear him to dedicate his life in faithfulness to God, his heart receptive always to Torah and Mitzvot. Then shall he bring blessing to his parents, his people, and all the world.
May the Lord bless you and keep you; May the Lord look kindly upon you and be gracious to you;
May the Lord bestow favor upon you and give you peace. Amen.
The Bris/Brit Milah Service might conclude with a reading in the form of an alphabetical acrostic of the child's name, selected from Psalm 119 or other Scriptural verses.
This prayer is offered following the circumcision or at the ending of the Bris/Brit Milah Service:
O God, we give thanks to You for the gift of our child, who has entered into the covenant of Abraham. Keep him from all harm, and grant that he may be a source of joy to us and all his dear ones. Be with us, and give us health and length of days. Teach us to rear our child with care and affection, with wisdom and understanding, that he may be a faithful child of our people, and a blessing to the world. We give thanks to You, O Lord, the Source of life. Amen.
The Bris/Brit Milah Service and the performance of the Jewish circumcision is considered a Simkha, a happy occasion,
and it is traditional to end any Simkha with the singing of “Siman Tov & Mazel Tov”
FYI: A Mohel, also pronounced Moyl or Moyel, comes from the Hebrew root M-L "to circumcise" and is the same root as the word Milah referring to the covenant of Milah. Milah means circumcision. The various pronunciations of the word Mohel/Moyl/Moyel come from the various East European/Ashkenazi dialects and modern Hebrew. Also the correct term for the ceremony is Brit Milah. The terms Brit and Bris also reflect different dialects and have come to be accepted into English over the term Brit Milah.