Bris Gift Ideas
Bris Gift Ideas
Brit milah, or in short “bris,” is the circumcision ceremony we perform on eight-day old babies. Circumcising the baby on the eighth day is so important that this ritual may be performed even on Shabbat and Yom Kippur, if necessary. Only if the baby’s life is in jeopardy, for example due to illness, may the time of the bris be changed. The bris, which started as a covenant between Abraham and God, ties the new-born eternally with God. It is customary to have the bris ceremony in front of family and friends and to have a festive meal.
Before the actual circumcision, the baby is given a pacifier or cotton pad dipped in a wine-filled Kiddush cup, in order to numb the ensuing pain. Additionally, a big part of the bris is reciting a prayer and naming the baby in front of family and friends for the first time. Since the naming of the baby is such an important part of the bris, a popular gift that guests like to bring is a Hebrew birth plate.
There are several types of Hebrew birth plates, such as wood, sterling silver, stained glass and more. If you wish to get a Hebrew birth plate, and you have a lot of money to invest, you can purchase a gold birth plate on which you can have different details you want engraved. If you are artistic and you want to add a more personal and sentimental value to your new nephew, brother or cousin’s birth plate, you can make one yourself! A lot of people, rather than buying a traditional sterling silver or painted wood Hebrew plate, embroider the baby’s name on a piece of velvet or silk and then frame it. In addition to the baby’s Hebrew name, there are a number of things that you can embroider on a birth plate, such as his English name, his Hebrew date of birth date, and holy passages. There are many passages from the Bible that are appropriate for the occasion, such “And I will establish My covenant between Me and thee,” which goes back to the original circumcision covenant God made with Abraham.
Another popular gift is a bris pillow. There are beautiful bris pillows on which you can embroider anything you want, usually the same things that apply to the Hebrew birth plate. A bris pillow sham can be made of anything, such as linen, silk and more, and their main advantage is that they can eventually be also framed, which will preserve them for many years. This will enable the pillow to one day become a family heirloom, which will surely be appreciated by the baby when he is old enough.
The Bris is a ceremony that occurs for baby boys at eight days old. Bris is short for Brit Milah, which references the circumcision process for Jewish boys. The circumcision represents a contract between Jews and G-d, which began with Abraham. It is important that the ceremony takes place on the eighth day of life. This time constraint is so important that it may take place on Shabbat or a holiday; it can only be postponed for a medical reason.
The Bris is a ceremony with specific rituals and traditions. It is customary for family and friends to gather together for the Brit Milah ceremony and be involved in the ceremony itself. Items necessary for the Bris include a Bris Pillow and a Kiddush cup. Common gifts to bring to the Bris include baby blessings and baby pins.
The Brit Milah ceremony has a specific order of rituals. For the circumcision, the baby boy is laid down on a pillow which is usually placed on the lap of a grandfather or another male relative. The male relative has the honor of holding the baby in a special chair for this crucial life cycle event. A Mohel, a trained doctor in Jewish communities, then performs the circumcision.
A Bris pillow makes for a wonderful gift to bring to a Bris. Even if the family does not decide to use the pillow during the ceremony, the pillow is a great souvenir that can last a lifetime. Many pillows are personalized with Hebrew writing or images of the Bris chair.
An important part of the Bris ceremony is the Kiddush. The blessing over the wine is said by a male relative after the circumcision in complete. This blessing includes the words of the Kiddush as well as an additional section thanking G-d for making the covenant.
Kiddush cups can be made of ceramic, pewter, and nickel materials. Some Kiddush cups feature designs of Jerusalem or vines of grape leaves.
A common gift for the newborn baby includes the written text of a blessing in Hebrew or English. The blessing can be found on a mobile or wall hanging such as a Magen David or Hamsa. The 'blessing for a baby boy' wishes him happiness, love, and success on his life path. Many of the blessing wall hangings are made of wood and feature colorful animated images.
Baby pins also make for a great gift to the newborn baby for his Bris. Baby pins display charms and iconic Jewish symbols. The pins can be used for display or clipped to a baby's crib, stroller, or a mother's diaper bag. The pins are usually made of metal and feature charms such as a Magen David star and Hamsa.
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For more information on the Bris or other Judaica items, feel free to contact our Judaica experts with any questions or concerns.