(FJC.ru) Girls representing four Ohr Avner Chabad-Lubavitch day schools in Ukraine joined together to celebrate their bat mitzvahs in a grand celebration.

The 20 teens assembled on a Shabbat eve in Dnepropetrovsk to get acquainted and to organize the celebration for their parents. Together, they baked traditional challah bread in preparation for the Shabbat. On Shabbat, during the morning prayers at the "Golden Rose" Synagogue, they received their Jewish names.

"Today is our bat mitzvah, the acknowledgement of the community of a girl's coming of age," stated Chaya Maltseva, the sixth-grade girls' leader from the Dnepropetrovsk school. "On Friday, girls from Dneprodzerzhinsk, Krivoy Rog and Cherkassy came here for an extensive program. They made good friends and united not only in their interests, but also their Jewish origin and this common experience. Standing on the threshold of their lives, they should associate with the community and this is very important so that they recognize themselves as adults."

The girls gathered once more Sunday morning to prepare a concert and gifts for their parents. The celebration was hosted by Chana Kaminetsky, co-director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Dnepropetrovsk. She presented each girl a Shabbat candlestick and a book of Psalms, on behalf of the Dnepropetrovsk community.

Irina Krikun from Dneprodzerzhinsk read greetings on behalf of all the parents. Her daughter Sara then followed up by thanking her on behalf of all the girls.

Said Vika Pelevnova, one of the celebrants: "Today I had my celebration of maturity, because this is very important for me. I feel I have grown not only physically, but in my soul and mind."