82-Year-Old Enters Abraham's Covenant
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FREE's circumcision program recently set a record: 82-year-old Alexander Getzberg is the oldest person ever to be circumcised in the over 12,900 circumcisions performed to date.
Because Judaism is a religion of action, under the best circumstances, the mitzvah of circumcision (Brit Milah) is the first action parents take to affirm their commitment to the covenant of Abraham and to bring their child into the Jewish heritage.
Most Jewish males from the Former Soviet Union have never been circumcised due to the long-standing communist prohibition of Jewish religious practice.
From its inception, FREE has been working to correct this serious issue, notifying Russian Jewish immigrants that this spiritually crucial ceremony is available completely free of charge. Russian immigrants have responded
favorably over the years, leading to thousands of Jews perfecting the relationship with their heritage through this ancient and extremely important mitzvah.
Persons interested in the circumcision program can receive a courtesy pick-up from FREE for transport to the Interfaith Medical Hospital where mohel Rabbi A. Romi Cohen performs a state-of-the-art, professional, painless procedure with local anesthesia and little to no after-effect.
In addition to the procedure, the circumcision (Brit Milah) ceremony provides an excellent opportunity to receive a Hebrew name.
Our ancestor Abraham was circumcised at age 99. In part, this teaches us that no Jew should be left out of this mitzvah, regardless of age. Each Jew that takes advantage of FREE's circumcision program forms another link in a 4,000 year-old chain of commitment to Judaism's higher calling.
"This is one of FREE's first projects," says Rabbi Mayer Okunov, Chairman of FREE, "Alexander has made history, he is the oldest person we have circumcised to date." When asked why he wanted a circumcision, Mr. Getzberg replied, "I want to feel like a real Jew. I am very happy to have the opportunity to be a part of my people. It's a very important mitzvah for a Jew. And I thought, better late than never.
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