Optimally, a father should circumcise his own sons. Optimally, an aliyah should read the Torah when called up. When we are called up for an aliyah, we say the brocha and the baal koreh reads for us. At a bris, though, the mohel says the brocha. Why doesn't the father say the brocha at the bris, and then the mohel performs the bris for him?

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    Shouldn't this question be asked the other way around( i.e.: If the performer of the act, and not the one in who's name it is done, is to say the Berakhah , like the Mohel who says the Berakhah before performing the Milah , why does the Oleh la-Torah say the Berakhah , when it is the Ba'al Qore' that performs the Qeri'at ha-Torah for him)? – Tamir Evan Nov 29 '12 at 19:01
  • I'm pretty sure I said the bracha at my son's bris. – Charles Koppelman Nov 29 '12 at 19:06
  • @CharlesKoppelman Did you say "la-Mul et ha-Ben"( or "al ha-Milah"), which is the Berakhah the performer of the Milah says, or "le-Hakhniso bi-Bhrito shel Avraham Avinu", which the father says? – Tamir Evan Nov 29 '12 at 19:17
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    @TamirEvan ah. I said "shel Avraham Avinu". Perhaps that should be added to the question. – Charles Koppelman Nov 29 '12 at 19:20
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    yoel, off the top of my head some other brachot that the shliach says include hafrashat terumot, kiddushin, pidyon haben, biur chametz and mezuzah. – Double AA Nov 29 '12 at 22:25

Your question is really the other way around. Generally speaking it's the person who does the mitzva action that says the bracha (Rambam Brachot 11:10). In the case of an aliyah, you are right that in most congregations an appointed reader is designated to read each persons portion out loud and with proper cantillation; however Shulchan Aruch (OC 141:2) rules that the one receiving the aliyah must read along with the leader in an undertone so that his blessings should not be in vain. We see that even in the case of an aliyah the bracha is said by the performer of the mitzva action itself.

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  • You should also see a piece by R Chaim Soloveitchik in the stencils about the bracha on mezuzah when putting it up on someone else's house. – Double AA Nov 29 '12 at 21:55
  • Can you source your second sentence (w.r.t. a mitzva done by another)? – msh210 Nov 30 '12 at 1:24
  • Unless the 'Oleh is illiterate. Then it is said by someone other than the performer of the Mitzvah. – Seth J Dec 3 '12 at 15:43
  • @SethJ You assume an illiterate person can get an aliyah (not just out of concerns such as kavod habriyot). – Double AA Dec 3 '12 at 17:35
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    @SethJ מי שאינו יודע לקרות צריך למחות בידו שלא יעלה לספר תורה ואם צריכים לזה שאינו יודע לקרות לפי שהוא כהן או לוי ואין שם אחר זולתו אם כשיקרא לו שליח ציבור מלה במלה יודע לאומרה ולקרותה מן הכתב יכול לעלות ואם לאו לא יעלה: OC 139:2 – Double AA Dec 3 '12 at 18:30

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