I was baptized in the Catholic Church, raised in the Methodist Church, and became an atheist when I was about 14 years old. My grandmother on my father's side was a non-observant Jew, but my father has always been Methodist. I was circumcised as a baby, although I have no idea how long after birth it was done; I assume it was performed by a doctor, but my mother says he was Italian, and probably Catholic, not Jewish. It certainly wasn't a bris, and the doctor obviously wasn't a moyle (excuse me if I misspelled the words).

I'm not planning to convert, but I am curious as to how my circumcision would be handled if I did convert. Would the procedure need to be repeated by a moyle?


1 Answer 1


Normally the circumcision preformed by a physician is sufficient to meet the physical requirements of "milah" (circumcision), nevertheless a process known as "hatafas dam bris" (הטפת דם ברית) is necessary (Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh Deah 268:1). In this process the Mohel draws a ritual drop of blood from the place of circumcision for the sake of the covenant. It is, or at least can be, painless. Insofar as most contemporary mohelim are unacquainted with adult circumcision, it is often the case that an uncircumcised convert will have the procedure preformed by a physician and subsequently have it "kashered" through hatafas dam bris.

  • 3
    i've had this done. Painless is not the word i would use x.x
    – Aaron
    Aug 14, 2015 at 16:28
  • Fair enough, but I have as well.
    – Yirmeyahu
    Aug 14, 2015 at 16:38
  • 1
    Is the blood taken from the foreskin, or the glans? That would be a make or break issue for me.
    – Wad Cheber
    Aug 15, 2015 at 1:35
  • 1
    There is no "foreskin" left if it is a case of hatafas dam bris, but it is done on the skin where the foreskin was removed from.
    – Yirmeyahu
    Aug 15, 2015 at 2:02
  • 2
    @Yirmeyahu TTBOMK it's a machloket acharonim if it's taken from where the foreskin had been attached or from the glans itself.
    – Double AA
    Oct 10, 2018 at 22:29

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