Over 100 young people from Russia, Ukraine, Italy, Germany, Hungary, France and Spain are currently studying various Jewish subjects in preparation of the booklet that they will receive this coming month sponsored by The Morasha division of RCE. The booklet contains the main aspects and Mitzvos of Judaism in conjunction with strengthening the Jewish identity (as in good deeds, giving, listening to others, etc.), and will be sent to all the communities involved in the Bar/Bat Mitzvah journey. Many of the children come from families without any Jewish background. Followed by studies and tests on the material, the peak will be a magnificent trip to Israel where they will tour and discover Judaism and Mitzvos.
Rabbi Yosef Bainhaker, Deputy Director-General and head of RCE’s Morasha division, stated that the point of the Journey is to connect these young people to their Jewish identity, as they don’t live in Jewish surroundings, through year-round activities, with emphasis on the Holidays.
The Bar/Bat Mitzvah journey to Israel is the flagship, culminating 3 months of Jewish education. During the journey, the group of youths participates in many excursions; fun filled and action packed trips, meet with a Scribe and many more surprises. This year the trip will be on 3/3/19-10/3/19, 26th of Adar Alef till 3rd of Adar Bet.
Once again as previous years, our loyal sponsor to the trip is Rabbi Eliyahu Edelkopf, Director of the Foundation for the Development of European Jewry, whose gracious assistance accompanies Morasha and the RCE all year round.
The highlight of the tour is the Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony held at the Kotel. Every boy receives a pair of tefilin and the girls receive a candlestick for Shabbos. The ceremonies continue with the participation of Hagaon Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef and Hagaon Rabbi Davis Lau, Knesset ministers, Public figures, entrepreneurs and leaders of the RCE. All this includes social educational activities. This is the 10th consecutive year that the RCE will accomplish this unique project.
During the week long journey, the group will visit the holy sites throughout the country and will get the opportunity to deepen the relationship with their Jewish tradition and the life in Israel. .The youths were accompanied by the rabbis and rebbetzins from their respective communities, and each group was given a guide who spoke its native language.
In addition to the tours and activities, the trip included many educational and social activities as well, for some of which the children were divided into smaller groups and for some everyone participated together. The entire program was planned with an emphasis on experiences that would leave impressions on the youths that would remain with them.