Being able to find the right words is a gift of its own and can also be a gesture of respect. Whether you're writing bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah invitations or preparing to attend your first mitzvah ever, we've compiled a list of common Hebrew phrases and Jewish sayings often overheard at such occasions. Just imagine one of these traditional sayings foil stamped in a festive color on your invitations!
Looking for more Bar/Bat Mitzvah tips? Check out our Bar/Bat Mitzvah Etiquette, Dress Code & Gift Guide post as you prepare to be the perfect guest for your loved one's big day.
(shah-LOHM) The Hebrew translation literally means "peace," although it is widely used to say "hello" and "goodbye."
(ah-ley-KHEM) Add Aleichem and you're saying "peace be upon you."
(MAH-zl TAWV) The translations from Yiddish and Hebrew literally mean "good luck," although it's mostly used as "congratulations!" It's typical in Jewish culture to also say mazel tov to the mothers, fathers, siblings and friends of the honoree.
(toh-DAH) This means "thank you," which would be the appropriate response to mazel tov.
(buh-kah-rohv ehtz-lehch) "Soon it will be you" is also an appropriate response to mazel tov.
(li-KHAY-eem) Literally means "to life." This is an especially popular way of saying "cheers!" during a toast.
(buh-tay-ah-vohn) This is the Hebrew way of saying "bon appetite!" The literal translation is "with appetite," which would go great on custom cake boxes or goodie bags with homemade treats inside .
(YAH-shehyr KOH-ahkh) This is Hebrew for "straight strength," and is usually reserved for congratulating someone on performing a mitzvah or other public ceremony.
(cha-zahkh uva-ruhkh] This Hebrew saying means "be strong and blessed."
(cha-zahkh VHAY eh-matz) This means "be strong and have courage," and is the appropriate response to chazak u'varuch.
(g'-SUND-hahyt) Gesundheit translates to "good health." Add ess to the front and you get "eat in good health."
(gey g'-SUND-hahyt) Add gey and it becomes "go in good health!"
(kohl toov) This is Hebrew for "be well," which works for saying goodbye.
(kohl hah-kah-vohd) Hebrew for "all of the respect."
Ani ohev otach
(AH-nee oh-hev oh-tach) Hebrew for "I love you," from a male to a female.
Ani ohevet otchah
(AH-nee oh-hevett oht-cha) "I love you," from a female to a male.
All of these Hebrew phrases and Jewish sayings are great for saying during the celebration. They're also perfect for printing on bar mitzvah invitations, dinner menus and goodie bags. Shalom!