Brit Bat: Jewish Traditions for Welcoming a Baby Girl

When a Jewish baby girl is born, there are
no specific requirements that her parents have to meet to welcome her into the Jewish
community, so many find their own creative ways to do this.
An increasingly common custom is to hold a ceremony called brit bat. The central act of this ceremony is a ritual
that represents the baby’s—and the Jewish people’s—covenant with God. There is some creative leeway in how the covenant
is represented: some parents choose to light candles, wash the baby’s feet, or wrap her
in a tallis. In addition to the rituals, a newborn ceremony
includes some blessings; the formal baby naming and—you guessed it—a festive meal. Another way to include the community in a
girl’s baby naming is to announce her name at synagogue when the new parents are called
up before the congregation during a Shabbat Torah service. This is an ideal time for parents to share
with their community the values with which they intend to raise their child.
One modern custom is for the parents to read a letter out loud to the child in front of
the guests. Dear Faye, You are named for
your great-grandmother Feige…

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