Covenant of Remembrance for those celebrating a Bar- or Bat-Mitzvah

A “Covenant of Remembrance” is a special addition to a Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony that connects this joyous occasion to an important event in our past. It offers a rich learning experience to the child embarking on this rite of passage into full membership in the Jewish People. It also remembers and memorializes a child who died during the Holocaust. The Bar/Bat Mitzvah candidate learns about one of the 1.5 million Jewish children who perished during the Holocaust.

Participating in this program can involve meeting and talking directly with a local Holocaust survivor or reading and researching texts about someone who has perished. This learning will then inform part of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah service and may involve the addition of special readings such as Psalms (Tehillim).

Steps towards a Covenant of Remembrance:

  1. Call the Dallas Holocaust Museum at 214-741-7500 to get information or set up an appointment for the child and at least one parent to meet with the Senior Director of Education, Dr. Sara Abosch. Dr. Abosch can also be reached at:
  2. Once informed, seek approval from the Rabbi or the person helping you prepare at the synagogue for your Bar/Bat Mitzvah.
  3. You may want to meet with a Holocaust survivor (either one whom you know or the museum can arrange a meeting) and interview the survivor about his or her experience during the Holocaust.
  4. We can direct you to readings (diaries by young people during the Holocaust), or we can assist you in finding a suitable child who perished in the Holocaust whose memory you can honor at your Bar/Bat Mitzvah.
  5. When you plan your synagogue service include a mention in your ceremony about the Covenant of Remembrance program and the tragic fate of this child Holocaust victim. Add readings such as sections of Psalms (Tehillim), as appropriate.
  6. Include some information in printed materials that may be given to your guests. If you are doing this program in conjunction with one of our local Survivors, the Museum can provide photos if available.
  7. If you interview a Holocaust survivor, he or she should be invited to your Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Please ensure that they have transportation and seat them in a place of honor. It would be nice, if possible, to give them an aliyah if they would like one.
  8. After your Bar/Bat Mitzvah is over, please provide the DHM/CET with copies of any printed materials and, if possible, photographs of the celebrant with the survivor.
  9. While the DHM/CET offers its services free of charge, we welcome a donation to the museum in the name of your Bar/Bat Mitzvah or the child whom he/she helped to remember.