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Debbie B.

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Posts : 373
Join date : 2011-09-05
Location : Chicagoland

PostSubject: Pidyon Haben   Fri Jul 12, 2013 1:27 am

Tonight my husband and I went to a "Pidyon HaBen": redemption of a first-born son. It was held at the large house of some minyan members and the weather was beautiful so most of it was outside in the backyard, which is fortunate because there were about 40-50 people so it would have been crowded inside even though the house is very big. The baby's bris had been done in the middle of a week day at their former synagogue in the city which is where they still work as Hebrew school teachers. My husband did go to it as did a surprising number of members of my minyan, but most members couldn't make it.

The parents carried the baby in on a silver platter, and he was "offered" to a minyan member who is a Kohen. Certain ritual questions and answers were recited, partly in Hebrew and partly in English. The parents "ransomed" their child with five silver coins. The member who was Kohen had never done this ritual before although he says that his son who made Aliyah and lives on a kibbutz in Israel has done the ritual several times since a number of his friends (who are not Kohanim or Levi'im) are having their first children, some of whom are boys, and whose birth fits the various requirements (not C-section, for example). This was the first Pidyon HaBen that I have ever attended. The father of the baby was explaining how due to the various requirements, many observant Jewish parents do not have the opportunity to observe this mitzvah.

One surprise to me was that the celebratory meal featured meat sandwiches because it is during the "The Nine Days" (when observant Jews obstain from eating meat) before Tisha B'Av. However, people can eat meat during the Nine Days for a "Seudat mitzvah" (an obligatory meal to celebrate a mitzvah).
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Sarit

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Join date : 2012-03-14
Age : 34
Location : Belgrade, Serbia

PostSubject: Re: Pidyon Haben   Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:59 am

Thank you, Debbie, for sharing this! I've never been to a Pidyon HaBen - I only read about it, and now you inspired me to read some more!

Thanks again! Thumps Up 
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