Redeeming First Born

According to the Bible, parents were to give their eldest sons to the priest to serve in the Temple. Since ancient times, a ceremony called Pidyon Haben is held on the 30th day of an infant male firstborn’s life to symbolically redeem the child from Temple servitude. Modern Jews have questioned both the sexism of the ceremony (it is only for boys) and the seemingly antiquarian notion of “redemption.” Both concerns are addressed in the rituals you will find in this section.