The Brit Milah ceremony has two parts:
the actual circumcision and the naming.
It is customary to honor family and friends to participate in holding the baby at various parts of the bris. The highest honor is to be the sandak, who holds the baby during the actual circumcision. It is not required to have a minyan- a group of ten at the bris. The parents can choose to have a private ceremony on the eighth day and have a reception on a later day when they are more rested.
The naming of the child
This is the most emotional part of many brit milah ceremonies. Ashkenazic-European Jews have the custom of naming after the deceased. The immortalizing of a close relative or friend is a beautiful tradition. Sephardic Jews have the tradition to name after the living. A child may have one or more names, in accordance with the parents’ desires.
Pre- Brit instructions
Try and not feed the baby 1 hour before the brit if possible. Make sure the baby has been cleaned and is not in a dirty diaper. Discuss the use of EMLA anesthetic with me.
All post briss instructions will be discussed after we are done. I will remove the bandage about a day after the brit. All you need to do is try and keep him happy and comfortable . You can use acamol or Tylenol as directed by your pediatrician .
Dr. Ethan Schuman (L) Dr. Ari Greenspan (R) during one of 15 adult britot done in Riga, Latvia in February 2008
When an adult converts there is often a need to do circumcision. That procedure is a more serious issueand must be done in a hospital setting. We anesthetizethe person so that they should feel no pain at allduring the brit. There is a need for sutures afterthe surgery.
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