In the Media

FREE Throws Gala Bar Mitzvah Celebration
- The Jewish Press

February 2, 2007

Eight Russian boys from the former Soviet Union, who had expressed an interest in becoming bar mitzvah, were treated to a special bar mitzvah celebration recently.

Friends of Refugees of Eastern Europe (FREE) provided them with bar mitzvah lessons, plus He­brew-language instructions. They were given classes in basic Judaism, Jewish history, davening (prayer) and proper observance of the mitzvot. FREE pur­chased a set of new teffilin for each of the young men, and taught them the intricacies of the mitzvah of putting them on.

Their interest in becoming bar mitzvah was piqued during their attendance in FREE's after-school program, Camp FREE and FREE's Yeshiva Ohel Dovid.

All the boys worked after school hours to pre­pare. Parents provided excellent support and were glad to see their sons making productive use of their time. Many of the boys gave speeches at the bar mitzvah ceremony, communicating their new knowl­edge and happiness. The ceremony was followed by a feast and family celebration.

FREE maintains contact with the bar mitzvah boys, offering follow-up programs while encourag­ing their continued growth and development. In this way, the bar mitzvah does not end up being a grand opening followed by a grand, non-eventful closing.

For more information about FREE's bar mitzvah program, call 718-467-0860 x 123, or e-mail Office@russianiewrv.org.

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