About how much does a Mohel charge for a bris (ritual circumcision)? What does it include? Does the cost vary based on denomination of the mohel? Are Rabbis Mohels as well?
First of all, mazal tov! It sounds as though you are a new parent or the parent of a new child, so let me wish you a life of blessings.
Mohalim (plural of mohel – ritual circumciser) are Jews who are trained in the medical aspects of brit milah, as well as the ritual and liturgical elements. Sometimes they are rabbis, but often they are not. Some are doctors who were already well versed with circumcision and studied to become certified by one or more of the movements. (To see the Conservative movement’s Brit Kodesh training program, click here.)
In terms of cost, most mohalim in the Boston area charge between $400 and $800. The cost does not usually vary by movement; more likely, cost varies due to normal economic forces and other factors, such as having an observant mohel walk a great distance for Shabbat or stay over for Shabbat. (That happened to me when my second son was born and his brit milah fell on Shabbat!) Often the cost will include phone consultation before the ceremony, and some will visit in the days after to make sure that all is well.
You may want to interview a couple of mohalim over the phone to find the right fit for you and your family. Mazal tov and may your raise your son to a life of Torah, huppah (to the wedding canopy) and a life filled with good deeds.
For more answers to questions about the hows and whys of circumcision, check out InterfaithFamily.com’s free e-booklet To Circumcise Or Not: That Is The Question.