Bar Mitzvah in Morocco
Around the age of 12 for girls and 13 for boys, this expression becomes relevant. That is why it is only at this age that Jewish law considers you responsible for your actions.
This step is called Bar Mitzva for boys and Bat Mitzva for girls. This means son/daughter of the mitzvah because, from this day forward, we are obliged to accomplish all the mitzvas of the Torah.
What happens if you have failed to celebrate the occasion? As soon as you reach this age, you are automatically Bar or Bat Mitzva. It's like a birthday: you can choose not to celebrate it, but it won't make you any younger.
Book your Private Morocco Tour Package to celebrate your son or daughter bat / Bar mitzvah
Memories of a Moroccan Jewish Child (1962)
At my Bar Mitzvah in July 1962, we had a great celebration; the religious ceremony took place at the Chalom Zaoui synagogue in the Mellah of Rabat. We crossed the whole of Henri Popp street with family and friends from all over Morocco.
That parade was wonderful, I was right in the middle with my parents Alice and Henri, on the right was my little sister Michèle, on the left was her friend Leslie. They were holding the candlesticks. Jacob and Charles were both around me. And everyone was advancing at a slow pace in the eyes of admiring passers-by and automobilists. Inside the temple, next to me was Rabbi David Gabay. I could begin my speech. The day ended I was now a man for the rest of my life.
Read more: The ultimate guide to Morocco Jewish Heritage
Morocco from a Jewish Perspective
I was born here, in Morocco, it’s where I grew up, evolved and I have always loved this country. In all objectivity, I feel at home here, and everything that has surrounded me since I was a child, our fellow believers of all races and religions, my culture, my traditions, our history, have participated in this awakening of meaning in me.
I have always grown up in this community, but also very closely to my Muslim and Christian friends who were born in this beautiful country. I do not, nor have I ever differentiated between Jews, Muslims or others.
It’s certainly true what is said about the break-up of our community in a diaspora around the world where it is diluted in foreign places, where it is gradually mutilated from its roots, where the marks of this identity gradually fade and will eventually disappear one day.
I hope that our children who have not lived the same life as we have, who are of the generation of two cultures (Eastern and Western), will be able to keep as a treasure and transmit this precious heritage that is the Jewish-Moroccan traditions that we have had the good fortune to inherit.
A great heritage that this tradition made of religious rites, gestures, smells, and colors.
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Some details about Bar Mitzvah
A few weeks beforehand, the young man trains daily to put on Tefillins. The day of his Bar Mitzvah marks the real beginning of this mitzvah.
From this day forward, it also has in the minyan, the quorum of ten men required for a public office.
He can, therefore, lead the collective prayer and receive an aliyah when reading the Torah. The boy Bar Mitzva is traditionally honored by an aliyah on the day he becomes Bar Mitzva or shortly thereafter. In some communities, it is traditional for him to read the Torah or the Haftarah (the reading of the Prophets that follows the reading of the Torah of the Sabbath).