• 28
    Jul

    Week of July 28 - August 1, 2014  (1 - 5 Av 5774) 

  • 04
    Aug

    Week of  August 4 - 8, 2014  (8 - 12 Av 5774) 

  • 11
    Aug

    Week of  August 11 - 15, 2014  (15 - 19 Av 5774) 

  • 02
    Aug

    August 2, 2014 ~ 6 Av 5774

  • 03
    Aug

    August 3, 2014 ~ 7 Av 5774

  • 04
    Aug

    Service Times this week at Beth El

Blessing For Your Child

On Friday Nights, preferably between candle lighting and Kiddush (but any time is okay) we bless our children of all ages with the following words.

THE BLESSING FOR A SON

Hebrew

Ye'simcha Elohim ke-Ephraim ve'chi-Menashe

English

May G-d make you like Ephraim and Menashe

Why do we use this blessing?

Just before Jacob dies, he blesses his two grandsons, Ephraim and Menashe. He says they should become role models for the Jewish people in the future.

On that day Jacob blessed them, he said, "In time to come, the people of Israel will use you as a blessing. They will say, 'May G-d make you like Ephraim and Menashe'." (Genesis 48:20)

Ephraim and Menashe did in fact become role models for the Jewish People. Unlike those before them, including Cain and Abel, Isaac and Ishmael, Jacob and Esau, and Joseph and his brothers, Ephraim and Menashe truly got along and openly showed their love for one another. In addition, they maintained their Jewish identity even though they grew up in the Diaspora of Egypt.

THE BLESSING FOR A DAUGHTER

Hebrew

Ye'simech Elohim ke-Sarah, Rivka, Ra-chel ve-Lay'ah

English

May G-d make you like Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah.

Why do we use this blessing?

Each of the matriarchs had qualities that qualified them as role models as well. The matriarchs were strong and capable women. They endured difficult home lives, hardships in marriage, infertility, abduction, envy from other woman, and difficult children. Nevertheless, these righteous women, through their individual passion, their partnerships with the patriarchs and their loyalty to G-d, succeeded in building strong families that were the nucleus of the Jewish people.

THE BLESSING FOR CHILDREN

After the above blessing is recited for a son or daughter, we continue with this blessing for both boys and girls.

Hebrew

Ye'varech'echa Adonoy ve'yish'merecha.
Ya'ir Adonoy panav eilecha viy-chuneka.
Yisa Adonoy panav eilecha, ve'yasim lecha shalom.

English

May G-d bless you and watch over you.
May G-d shine His face toward you and show you favor.
May G-d be favorably disposed toward you and grant you peace.