Reflection on an Interfaith Brit Milah

By Traci Elliot

Our son's bris was an important ritual to us particularly because my husband is not Jewish. Our wedding was performed in the Jewish tradition but a bris makes a stronger statement about a family's intentions. A bris is a serious event, performed under strict Jewish law. For us, it clarified our relatively new family's values about religion, to ourselves and to our extended family.

What I found particularly interesting is the timing of the bris. Having been in bed for eight days, I was coaxed into getting up and dressing up. Because I was still weak, it was the easiest party I ever hosted! Somehow, my family organized everything.

A close friend of mine, our lay rebbe, convinced me that as a feminist measure, I should include a babynaming ceremony too. We did that after the bris (and nursing), and it added a more informal, sweet touch to the day.