This morning, on the first day of the new year, I had the pleasure of attending a brit milah, sometimes called a bris. A bris is a ceremony in which a male infant is circumcised. God commanded the Jewish people “On the eighth day, the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised.”(Leviticus 12.2) Today, this young child entered into a covenant with God and received his Hebrew name, Shmuel Pinchas.
Shmuel Pinchas was born on the first night of Chanukah. On that night, Jews all over the world lit two candles to begin the Festival of Lights. His bris occurred on the eighth and last day of Chanukah when Jews lit nine candles to fully illuminate the menorah. On each day of his young life, candles were lit all over the world to celebrate Chanukah. His young life has been filled with light.
With the start of the new year, may we all be illuminated with the light of peace. May we all be kind to each other, be grateful for the many gifts we receive each day, and love our friends and families with all our hearts. Mazel Tov to my good friends on the birth their son Shmuel Pinchas. May he always be a blessing to you.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has granted us life, sustained us and enabled us to reach this occasion.