Essentials for the Covenant of Circumcision and the Celebration of Brit Milah (Brit)
- A brit takes place the eighth day after the birth of a son.
- A father is obligated to circumcise his son, but can transfer that obligation.
- There are a number of roles to be played during the ceremony, including bringing the baby into the ceremony on a pillow (kvatter); holding the child during the circumcision (sandak); and holding the baby during the naming (sheini).
- Any medical issue can be cause for calling off a brit; the baby’s health takes priority.
- It is customary – and considered good luck – to keep the baby's name a secret until the brit.
- There are two key blessings at a brit: The mohel says one about the mitzvah of milah, and the father recites one about bringing his son into Abraham’s covenant.
- Plan a party.
Questions for a Mohel:
- What method of sterilization do you use?
- Where did you train?
- How many brit milah have you performed?
- Do you have references or letters of recommendation to share?
- How many times – before and after the brit – do you visit?
- Who removes the bandage?
- Do you offer topical anesthetic?