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Service Outline

Please use the outline below to plan your service. While all services incorporate most of these prayers and readings, there is room for the B'nei Mitzvah family to make some choices about which are included. When our Siddur offers a choice of alternative readings for one section, the B'nei Mitzvah's family may choose any of the alternative readings provided. The final service outline will be designed in coordination with the rabbi and each family.

The B'nei Mitzvah service offers opportunities to honor special friends and family members, regardless of religious affiliation. These honors may include leading a reading or blessing, reciting the blessings for an Aliyah, and dressing the Torah. It is our custom to include a non-Jewish spouse or partner to join in any role or participation in the service. This applies also to those called for an Aliyah to the Torah. Once you have selected friends and family members to take part in the service, please complete the Aliyah form and email it to Rabbi Edery.

Music enhances the service. We encourage you to include a variety of songs, to have a musician providing instrumental support, and to bring additional music. The congregants below are often available to enhance your service with music. Please be sure to contact one of them early in your planning. Feel free to ask or include others as well.

B'nei Mitzvah at Beth Shalom, pianist Evan Brudney

Evan Brudney is a classically trained pianist with over 20 years’ experience. Evan became a Beth Shalom member in the spring of 2015. Since joining Beth Shalom, he has provided frequent musical accompaniment as a soloist and with the temple choir for B’nei Mitzvot, Shabbat services, special holiday services, and High Holy Day services. Evan knows a wide range of traditional and contemporary Jewish melodies, as well as some popular contemporary secular songs. Additionally, he can learn new musical arrangements at the request of the family and with sufficient prior notice. Evan will work closely with families to select musical pieces that will enhance the service and offer his suggestions about which songs to include in the service. His rate for playing a Bar or Bat Mitzvah service is $100. For more information, please click here to email him.

Lisa Sharp’s love for our B’nei Mitzvah students and their families is clear in all she does. She has played piano for services and taught Torah chanting at Beth Shalom since 2005. She knows all service music and can incorporate contemporary music if provided enough time. Lisa is happy to help guide a family’s choices for music throughout the service including silent meditation music. The fee is $100 which includes meeting with the family at the temple to review and rehearse music prior to the service as well as playing on the day of the service. For more information, please contact her at or (919) 345-2334.

B'nei Mitzvah at Beth Shalom, pianist Lisa Sharp

B'nei Mitzvah at Beth Shalom, Rabbi Mike Stevens

Mike Stevens is a retired Reform rabbi, with over 40 years in the congregational rabbinate. As a musician, Mike holds an M.A. in Music Composition; his compositions include more than three dozen Jewish liturgical songs, and two marches and other music for concert band and orchestra. Since joining Beth Shalom in 2017, Mike has played piano once a month for our Shabbat services, in addition to accompanying an elementary school chorus and playing show tunes and popular songs for fundraising events. Mike will be happy to help you choose music and to play piano for your Simcha, including songs while the congregation is entering and leaving the sanctuary. Mike’s honorarium is $100. You can write to Mike at, or call (919) 586-7950.

Page Song/Blessing Details (Reader/Chanter/Singer, etc.) Audio Link (if available)
  Opening Song Decided by family. Some options:
Hineh Mah Tov (p.10), Lo Isa Goy (p. 59, #14), Bim Bam
10 Blessing for Tallit The giving of the Tallit can be done by relatives close to the B’nei Mitzvah,
most typically the parents or grandparents. The student recites the blessing.
10 Mah Tovu Student will chant first and then read remainder in English. Audio
10 For Body & Health Student, or may be assigned to relative or friend.  
10 For Spirit & Personality Student, or may be assigned to relative or friend.  
10 Blessing for Torah Read in Hebrew by student. Audio
11 Waking Up to a New Day Student chants in Hebrew, responsively. Audio
12-14 Learning from the Talmud Select one of the readings in these pages
(choose one of the 7 sections—not more, not less).
It may be assigned to relative or friend.
15 Blessed is the One This blessing can be read by the student, or relative or friend.  
15-16 Ashrei Optional. Student chants in Hebrew.  
17-18 Readings from the Psalms Optional. You may select one section, reading or song. 
It may be assigned to relative or friend.
19 Halleluyah Sung by the congregation. Audio
20 Reader's Kaddish Student Audio
21 Barchu Student Audio
21 Yotzer Or Student reads the first line in Hebrew, the rest in English.  
23-24 Revelation/Ahavah Rabbah Rabbi  
25-27 Sh'ma & V'ahavta Student Audio
28 Redemption (Geulah) or
Truth in Which We Trust
Select either the top or the bottom reading. This section may be assigned, in Hebrew or English, to a Jewish friend or relative.  
29 Michamoka Student chants in Hebrew. Audio
30 Amidah Student chants in Hebrew.
Avot v'Imahot

31 Consecration (Kedushah) Student chants. Audio
32 R'tzei The section “Avodah - Service of Worship” may be read (optional), in English,
by anyone designated. Student then leads singing in Hebrew at the bottom.
33 Hoda'ah (Gratitude) Select one of the three sections on this page.
Student, or someone assigned, leads in English.
34 Yismekhu/V'shamru Choose one of these two songs. Student or Cantorial Soloist leads. Audio (V'shamru)
35 Shalom - Peace Student or Cantorial Soloist leads, singing Shalom Rav (at the top). 
May be followed by the next reading in English. (Optional.)
  Silent Meditation We take two minutes for silent meditation, and/or to follow the readings on pages 36-39 individually. This time may be enhanced with appropriate instrumental music, by anyone who may provide adequate music.

This is a good opportunity to involve anyone musically-talented among family and friends.
39 Oseh Shalom or
Yhiu Leratzon
Student leads singing one of these songs. Oseh Shalom  (Traditional)

Oseh Shalom 
(Additional Option)

Yhiu Letrazon

47 The Reading of Torah Student leads singing in Hebrew the first section. As an honor, a family member or Jewish friend/couple can be asked to come up to the Bimah and remove the Torah from the Aron HaKodesh (Ark of the Holy). Audio
47 Vay'hi Beensoah Student leads singing in Hebrew. Audio
  L'dor Vador Symbolically passing the Torah from one generation to the next. Grandparents and parents
come up to the Bimah for a ceremonial passing of the Torah across generations.
48 Sh'ma Student leads. Audio
48 Hakahfah (Torah Processional) The cantorial soloist and Rabbi lead singing as the Bnei Mitzvah, accompanied by their family, carry the Torah around and back to the Bimah.  
48-49 Torah Blessings
and Reading 
A person or couple is called for a blessing before the reading of verses from Torah (this is an “Aliyah.") We may have up to six “Aliyot” (plural), plus one for the B'nei Mitzvah. Ideally,
you will have the Hebrew name for each person and his/her parents to facilitate calling up
that individual to recite the Torah Blessing by their Hebrew name. The Hebrew name is
not a requirement, but this is a special opportunity to mention it if we have one and know it.
(Prayer for Healing)
50 Parent's Prayer Following their Aliyah to the Torah, parents remain by the Bimah.
Then, the B'nei Mitzvah has their Aliyah.
Then, parents recite (together or alternatively) this prayer.
51 V'zot Ha'Torah
(Lifting the Torah)
The Cantorial Soloist sings as the Torah is lifted. You can choose one person to lift the
Torah, if they are experienced, and one to three people to dress the Torah.
Dressing the Torah can be a good role for younger siblings and relatives.

*We ask families to provide an English and Hebrew version of the Torah and Haftarah readings in a booklet, so all congregants can follow the text as Torah is read. Rabbi Edery will assist in preparing this, at your request.
51 Haftarah Blessings
and Chanting
Student. Audio (Blessings)
  Returning the Torah to the Ark You may bestow this honor on a Jewish relative or friend.  
52 Yehalelu and Eitz Chayim Student and Cantorial Soloist. Audio
(Eitz Chayim)
    The following elements can be done in the order suggested below or in another order, if you prefer. You can also add blessings or presentations to meet the needs of your family.

Bar Mitzvah D’Var Torah (Sermon) and Thank you’s
Presentation of Gifts by Beth Shalom Officers
Parents’ Comments
Rabbi’s comments
50 Priestly Blessing Rabbi.  
53-54 Aleinu Student. Audio
55 Kaddish Rabbi/Cantorial Soloist.  
56-63 Closing Songs The choice of a song is left up the B’nei Mitzvah family.  
64 Hamotzi and Kiddush The Bnei Mitzvah and their family lead Kiddush and HaMotzi. Other family members or friends can also be invited to join at the Bimah for these blessings.  


Fri, September 18 2020 29 Elul 5780