Every Sabbath, Jewish children receive the blessing of their parents. It is traditional for the parents to place their hands on the child's head and say this prayer:
For sons: May G-d make you as Ephraim and Manasseh.
For daughters: May G-d make you as Sarah, Rivkah, Rachel, and Leah, the four mothers of Israel.
During our Erev Shabbat service, the children stand under the tallit and we sing a song of blessing to them, followed by the blessings listed above. This is the song we sing (from Fiddler on the Roof)
Don't you love the words? Imagine growing up being blessed by your parents in this manner. My husband, Rabbi Jem, grew up in a Jewish home and was blessed by his parents each week. The prayers and the blessings he received have had a great impact on his life.
I love this part of the service because the children look so precious standing there as we bless them. We stretch out our hands to them and make the sign of the "shin" (a Hebrew letter). You can see the two littlest boys trying to make the sign, too. I'll explain more about this in next week's post.
I'm sharing this post at:
A Wise Woman Builds
Whole Hearted Wednesday
Wake Up Wednesday
Hearts for Home