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Shehecheyanu: The Jewish Blessing for Firsts

Recommended for all ages

Shehecheyanu (pronounced sheh-hekh-ey-ya-noo) is a Jewish blessing for firsts.There’s a lot of emphasis in Judaism on stopping to recognize special moments. Some do this in the form of a prayer or a blessing for the first time they are doing something new. It’s said the first time you light Chanukah candles, the first time you taste matzah or the first time you taste a new fruit in a year. It’s also said at a conversion, the birth of a new child or upon seeing a friend for the first time in ages.

Take a moment to learn this Jewish blessing for firsts so the next time you find yourself in a first, you’ll know what to say.



The videos in the Lifecycles Series were made possible with generous support from  The Koret Foundation, as part of their Initiative on Jewish Peoplehood. Based in San Francisco, the Koret Foundation supports groups like G‑dcast that contribute to a thriving community enhancing the quality of life for all.

Koret Foundation


Written by Sarah Lefton, Matthue Roth and Jeremy Shuback

Storyboards and Character Illustrations by Jeanne Stern

Animation by Alex Salsberg

Background Illustrations by Tammy Chang

Music by Ben Bromfield

Narrated by Sarah Lefton

Produced, Directed, and Sound Edited by Jeremy Shuback

Audience Development and Partnership Coordination by Lisa Finkelstein

Executive Producer was Sarah Lefton



Thanks to the rest of the G‑dcast Team, Koret Foundation leaders, and Distribution Partner organizations for their pluralistic guidance and general expertise.

There are a myriad of Jewish subcultures and people, and the conversations in this video explore the array of choices people make in interpreting different types of Jewish rituals today.

© G‑dcast 2015

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