Rabbi Eliezer Lawrence
Top 3 things to look for in a Mohel
As an NYC based mohel, I often get asked the question of what to look for when choosing the right mohel for your family to do the bris.
1) a Mohel must be kind, patient and flexible: As practitioners who do brises all the time, many mohalim forget that this is a very unique and special day with mixed feelings of joy and fear. A mohel must be in-tune with the needs and experience of the family.
2) a Mohel must be a religiously observant individual: A bris is not just a cosmetic procedure, it is religious ceremony that inducts a child into an ancestral tradition. Jewish law states that for a bris to be Kosher, the Mohel must be a Sabbath observant and Kosher keeping Jew. With a bris, it is better to do it right the first time, and stick with a Mohel who will make sure to do it both cosmetically and Kosher!
3) a Mohel must have cultural sensitivity: Since Jews from across the denominational and cultural spectrum all share the welcoming ceremony, whether a bris or a baby naming, a Mohel must be sensitive to the various experiences of members of the Jewish community and be culturally versed in the diversity of practices. Whether you are Orthodox and Ashkenazi, Mizrachi and Reform, LGBTQ and renewal, or any combination, a Mohel should be thoughtful, respectful and knowledgeable of the spectrum of Jewish existence.