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A friend asked me if I would ask you for your help. He was wondering if all boys in Conservative sects give a d'var on their bar Mitzvah, or is that not until after the bar Mitzvah? Thoughts please?

Thank you all as well for your answers so far. I appreciate your willingness to help.

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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Lisa! I removed the devorim tag from your question; that tag is reserved for questions about the weekly Torah portion of Devorim (Deuteronomy 1:1–3:22). – Shokhet Mar 13 '17 at 16:29
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    One way in which this question might be improved (and receive better answers) would be to include why you think a d'var Torah should be given at a particular time. To clarify, by "bar Mitzvah," do you mean the party? The Shabbos? The "bo bayom"? – Shokhet Mar 13 '17 at 16:33
  • There are different minhagim depending on what community or sect you are in concerning the bar mitzvah. Perhaps you should edit to clarify. – ezra Mar 13 '17 at 17:32
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I am unaware of any "formal halacha" that requires this. As a matter of fact, halachically, absolutely no party whatsoever is required for a Bar Mitzvah.

It has been a long-time custom to make some type of Bar Mitzvah party, esp. in U.S. Ideally, this party should be a Se'udat mitzvah. To do this, typically, a siyum (completion of a Talmud tractate) is made. Sometimes, the Bar Mitzvah makes this siyum, but it could be done by anyone. Regardless, it is common for the Bar Mitvah to make some D'var Torah at the celebration. On many occasions, no siyum is made, however, the Bar Mitzvah and, frequently various rabbis, sometimes associate with the family's shul or boy's yeshiva, give Divrei Torah. (The nicest ones I've seen are where the Bar Mitzvah's D'var Torah incorporates some verse or adage into his appreciation of his parents.)

From what I have seen, this is common protocol at Orthodox Bar Mitzvah celebrations. I have not seen this done at Conservative or Reform ones. However, I have seen Bar Mitzvah say a D'var Torah in shul on the Shabbat that they receive their aliyah in Orthodox (in addition to the one they do at the party) as well as Conservative and Reform shuls.

  • I've seen quite a few bar mitzvah celebrants make a siyum on one or more s'darim of Mishnah, very few on tractates of Talmud. – msh210 Mar 13 '17 at 22:03
  • @msh210 I've made an edit. You are correct. Frequently, as my own Bar Mitzvah, there was no siyum, but I gave a D'var Torah. – DanF Mar 13 '17 at 22:09

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