Faith Matters - September 14, 2013

September 14, 2013 

The days known as the High Holy Days in the Jewish calendar are the most intense, introspective and deeply emotional days of the year.

These days begin with Rosh Hashanah and conclude 10 days later with Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

Yom Kippur marks the most important, holy moment of our religious calendar.

On Yom Kippur we come to God seeking absolution and forgiveness for the past year.

In the days leading up to Yom Kippur, we were given the opportunity to rectify and atone for grievances to one another.

On Yom Kippur, we are given the opportunity to atone for grievances regarding God, as individuals and as part of a faith community.

Liturgically, Yom Kippur began with our Kol Nidre evening service Friday night and the singing of the prayer by the same name. During Kol Nidre, we offer prayers that make the vows we have made during the previous year null and void.

However, this prayer refers only to vows made between humans and God; as our tradition teaches, vows between people can only be voided by the people involved.

In the Yom Kippur morning service, we liturgically seek repentance, and spend time recalling our actions during the year just ended. This leads into the powerful Yizkor service of remembrance, during which we recall and honor family and friends who have died. We beautifully project the names of these dear ones onto the wall behind the pulpit.

This day concludes with our late-afternoon healing service, during which congregants share stories oftheir own personal healing journeys in life.

As the day concludes, we host a community break-the-fast meal in the social hall. Saturday morning service starts at 10 a.m. and the healing service begins at 4:30 pm.

As always, we welcome one and all who wish to partake in our High Holy Days worship services. No tickets are ever needed at Temple Beth El.

L'shana Tova/Happy New Year 5774!

Rabbi Harold Caminker of Temple Beth El can be reached at 941-755-4900 or 941-806-9925.

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