NEEDED SUPPLIES - Things you must have in the main room where the ceremony will take place (except when after-care noted below):

  1. A sturdy waist-high table (e.g. bridge or square table – the more stable, the better) with a decorative cloth (see 3.). The Sandek may be sitting on it.
  2. A small table.
  3. The decorative tablecloth may be white or pale blue.
  4. Three chairs around this table. The middle of the three chairs should have a pillow on it (Throne of Elijah).
  5. On the table should be one Kiddush cup filled nearly full with a sweet Kosher red grape wine. You do not need to have the wine bottle on the table. If you wish to have your guests make Kiddush, please pre-pour the wine.
  6. Two candle holders with candles and matches (also on the table).
  7. Two spare disposable diapers and a box of wipes.
  8. A garbage bag (wastebasket with plastic liner) under the table.
  9. A bright light shining on to the table, preferably suspended above the table or set up beside the table.
  10. A cotton receiving blanket.
  11. Two glasses of Kosher juice, preferably grape (Kedem, Maneschewitz, Rashi), on the table.
  12. A smaller glass saucer [for the pacifier].
  13. Two Tallitot – one for the Sandek and a second one for the father.
  14. Lots of Kippahs (kippot/yarmulkes) for your guests.
  15. Three dozen individually wrapped 3x3 sterile gauze pads - CVS, Rite Aid and Target brands are best. (Some for the bris, the remainder for after-care.) 4x4 are not optimal but acceptable.
  16. One small box of sterile cotton balls (for after-care).
  17. A fresh tube of bacitracin (for the bris) - do not buy one with an anesthetic - it is not safe for a newborn AFTER a bris.
  18. A fresh tube of Vaseline ointment (not cream), petroleum jelly or tube of Aquafor  (for after-care).
  19. A loaf of Challah for the motzi prior to the meal - this is not part of the Bris but part of the festive meal (on Passover, of course, substitute Matzah).
  20. A standard bed pillow with pillowcase, in addition to the pillow on Elijah's Throne (see #4 above - total of 2 pillows). This will be used to cushion the baby during the bris.
  21. The page on the website, "When You Call" needs to be looked at if you haven't already done this. The first five questions were covered on your first phone call to me. Now, the following 27 questions need to be copied from the webpage and pasted into an email to me. Please put spaces between each question and type the answers to the appropriate questions in those spaces. When you've done that, please email it to me at  
  22. Please print pages 19, 20 and 21.of the downloadable booklet available from the HOME page. The next to last page of the download booklet (page 21)  is the summary of aftercare instructions. The page prior to that (page 20) has a list of people to be honored plus a list of the English and Hebrew names of the family. It should be completely filled out by the parents prior to the arrival of the Mohel for the bris and that page should be left on the table so that the Mohel can see the names during the naming ceremony The page just prior to this in the booklet (page 19) is the Consent to Perform the Brit Milah. Pages 19 and 20 must be completely filled out prior to the arrival of the Mohel so as to not delay the start of the ceremony.
  23. The generic EMLA cream that you need to ask your pediatrician to prescribe for application prior to the bris and "paper tape" to make an occlusive dressing - these will be discussed on our pre Bris phone call.

We will also need a separate room to do the pre-examination of the child. This room must have the following:

  1. A closeable door.
  2. A small table with a chair in front of it. This table should allow one person to stand behind it to hold the baby.
  3. A bright light shining onto the table.
  4. A diaper, diaper wipes, and a receiving blanket on the table.
  5. A garbage bag under the table.
  6. A soother (pacifier) on the table.

General instructions:

  1. The baby should be wearing a T-shirt, loose gown or sack - nothing with legs, buttons or snaps so that it can be raised above the disposable diaper…also socks and a receiving blanket (cotton or flannel is preferred).
  2. He should be fed up to one hour before the scheduled time of the Brit Milah. You will be able to feed him immediately afterward.
  3. Please apply the anesthetic cream (generic EMLA prescribed by your pediatrician) 75 minutes prior to the scheduled start of the ceremony for optimum effectiveness. The entire penis should be covered with a thick layer of this cream (most of it will be washed away with the baby's urination). Then drop a 2 inch square of "Saran Wrap" flat over the penis and abdomen (do not wrap it around the penis alone) and use 4 pieces of 1" long paper tape to fix it to the abdominal wall above, the inner thighs and the scrotum below. This will prevent the cream from rubbing off onto the diaper. Please give your infant the Infant  Acetaminophen 1 hour before the scheduled time of the Brit Milah. We will discuss the weight based dose on the phone prior to the Bris. DO NOT USE ADVIL OR ANY OTHER MEDICATION INSTEAD OF INFANT Acetaminophen.
  4. Photographs and video are OK (except on Shabbat) except for the short time of the actual Brit Milah when no photography is permitted.
  5. It is traditional to have a festive meal after the Brit Milah (except on fast days). Please consider making this a dairy or kosher meat meal (not "kosher style") so everyone, regardless of level of observance, can partake.
  6. Please contact me immediately if your child has any significant medical problems prior to the Brit Milah. Your pediatrician should examine the penis sometime prior to the brit milah and clear the baby for a circumcision, stating that there are no physical abnormalities that would prevent the performance of the brit milah.
  7. Remember to download post-procedure instructions on page 21 of the Parent's Guide To Ritual Circumcision.You will need to apply Vaseline or an antibiotic ointment (Bacitracin/Neosporin) to the area with each diaper change for a week after the Brit Milah.
  8. Turn off the phones, beepers and answering machines before the ceremony. Place a sign on the door that reads "Please Come In" so that guests will not knock on the door nor ring the bell during the ceremony.
  9. Please have your guests come 15 minutes before the start of the ceremony so that it may begin on time.

©2023 HARVEY MARCHBEIN. All rights reserved.