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Testimonials

Testimonials

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I can't imagine planning my children's Bar/Bat Mitzvot anywhere but at Chabad of Potomac.  Their experiences were unique, meaningful, and personal.  

 

My son's Bat Mitzvah was a traditional Shabbat Torah service, but Rabbi Bluming made it come alive by incorporating my son's parsha theme throughout the ceremony.  Rabbi  & Sara Bluming taught my son the Kabbalistic meaning behind his parsha, which made the portion relevant and inspirational.  The Rabbi then used a piece of the parsha to build his own sermon, making it personal to my son and our extended family.

 

My daughters' services were memorable, as well.  They both had their services on a Sunday, reading selected Hebrew portions from Torah based on a theme meaningful to them.  Again, Rabbi and Sara taught them the Kabbalistic significance behind those portions, and the theme was incorporated throughout the entire ceremony.   Then, family members were honored by giving blessings to my daughters on the Bema in relation to the Kabbalistic theme selected.  I remember my friend asking, "What time is the service?  I know I NEVER want to be late to a Bat Mitzvah you do at Chabad!"

 

Planning a Mitzvah at Chabad allows children to express themselves in ways never imagined.  A Mitzvah at Chabad is truly a milestone that is meaningful and inspirational, allowing the children to transition into young adults with energy and purpose.

 

My gratitude to Chabad,
Susan Eisen

 

Having had both of my daughters Bat Mitzvah’d at the Chabad of Potomac, I feel I can speak honestly about the experience. What I cared most about when beginning the process was that despite the rules of the service being male-dominant, my daughters would not be marginalized in the service. 

 

After my first meeting with the Rabbi and Sara, it was clear that their desire was to make the service warm and personal, with as much input and voice from women family members. Rabbi acknowledged my concern of the men leading much of a Saturday morning service and shared with us his sincere desire to have my daughters’ female relatives active in the service; this became one of the most beautiful aspects. After my husband and I spoke to Nyomi, seven to nine women came to the front of the sanctuary to offer a blessing to Nyomi, after which a cup of wine was poured into a larger wine glass, later used to say the blessing during the luncheon. Seeing my daughters’ family speak to her with such personal stories and wishes was such a touching part of the service. Needless to say the room was engaged and tears were shed. 

 

Another aspect that I greatly appreciated in the planning of the service was Sara’s openness to having the girls choose a portion from which to read, one that had great meaning to each of them. She sat down with each daughter and after listening to what they both enjoyed and cared about, portions were suggested to match their interest. They were never told they had to speak about a particular topic. Because of how Sara individualized their readings, my daughters were excited and enthusiastic to prepare and analyze the readings. 

 

My husband I could not have had more appreciative and happy with the way our daughters’ services turned out. Many friends and relatives have commented to us – after both services – that they had not experienced such warm, personal, and intimate Bat Mitzvahs like this before. -Lisa Fox 

 

My family and I are so grateful to Rabbi and Rebbetzin Bluming for welcoming us into the Chabad community. Our daughter's Hebrew education has been one of meaningful study and spiritual growth. From our first Bat Mitzvah meeting with Rabbi & Sara Bluming we knew that our daughter's Bat Mitzvah would be a wonderful journey. The journey began with a summer of one-on-one study with Rebbetzin Bluming. Our daughter was able to study in depth a theme close to her heart. With support and encouragement, her theme took wings, becoming an opportunity for Judaic exploration and personal growth. 

 

On the evening of the Bat Mitzvah our daughter, whose confidence and excitement were at an all time high, delivered her portion of the Kabbalah and Torah readings, interlaced with a charming speech, under the supportive and nurturing guidance of the Rabbi and Rebbetzin.

 

The Havdalah service delivered by Rabbi Bluming, including his deeply moving words, captivated all; Rebbetzin Bluming followed with an equally moving speech about what it is to be a Bat Mitzvah. Everyone was moved by their beautiful words. The service ended with song and prayer in the glow of candlelight. 

 

This most important evening of our lives was more joyous and spiritual than we ever dreamed. We are eternally thankful to Rabbi and Rebbetzin Bluming for their kindness and support. We can say without hesitation that our daughter loved every lesson and every moment of her Bat Mitzvah journey. Diane & Damon Xenopoulos 

 

This December I experienced the best night of my life that wouldn't have been possible without the Chabad of Potomac. After thinking it was not possible to learn so much Hebrew and not make a mistake, I accomplished reading an eight minute speech of Hebrew writings and Jewish history that mean so much to me. Mrs. Bluming gave me interesting and challenging classes that broadened my knowledge of my Jewish background and 100% prepared me for my Bat Mitzvah. The Rabbi and Rebbetzin made wonderful speeches that not only I enjoyed but so did all my friends and family. My speech went smoothly and I loved every minute of it. I will never forget what a treat it was to have my Bat Mitzvah with the Chabad of Potomac!!  Charlotte Xenopoulos 
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