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On this page you are able to view the full schedule of events, find out how you can join us this year, get answers to FAQ's and more. 

2022-2023 Frequently Asked Questions

 

How Can I Reserve a Mahzor (Prayerbook) if I am watching on Livestream? Our services this year will be able to be viewed via livestream on our YouTube Channel here. You can reserve a Mahzor by filling out our request form here. You will be able to pick up a requested Mahzor at Temple Mon-Fri during normal business hours. We will only be able to lend a Mahzor if you complete the request form. 

 

What will services be like this year? Our services this year are focusing on a return to a High Holy Days experience that we all know and love. In a post-pandemic era of Aliyah. Erev Rosh Hashanah, Kol Nidre and the early services on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur will be similar to years past. Afternoon services on the first day of Rosh Hashanah and on Yom Kippur will be non-traditional, musically-accompanied MAKOR services. On Yom Kippur, Yizkor service will take place immediately after the morning service. If you are attending MAKOR, please plan to arrive by noon on Yom Kippur. What safety measures will be taken due to COVID 19?  Our COVID Committee meets regularly to review the latest guidelines and data to guarantee Temple Aliyah is applying the most up-to-date recommended measures to ensure everyone’s safety. Masks are recommended for all services, regardless of vaccination status.

 

Please see the protocols below our listed schedule. Protocols are subject to change.   Will services be livestreamed? Do I need to fill out the ticket form if I don’t plan on attending in person? Yes, all sanctuary services will be livestreamed for those who cannot attend, or for out-of-town family and friends to join us virtually. Whether you will join us in person or not, we appreciate you filling out the ticket request form linked above so that we know what your plans are, and can make your seats available to others who would like to attend in person. Mahzors (prayerbooks) will be available for pickup.   What is MAKOR? Can I attend it even if I choose tickets to the Morning Service?  MAKOR is our non-traditional, casual, High Holy Day service featuring musical accompaniment, new melodies, and a little bit of meditation. It will be held in place of “traditional” services on the afternoons of the first day of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. If you register for the Early Service or any of the Family Services but would like to attend MAKOR, you are welcome to do so! Simply show your ticket.    Will there be discussions on Yom Kippur afternoon? Will they be available virtually for those who cannot be there in person? Yes. The exact schedule and discussion topics are still being finalized, but regardless which service you are attending, we invite you to participate in our afternoon discussion sessions from 1:15 - 5:15pm. We plan to have a combination of in-person and Zoom discussion sessions.   Who do I contact if I have problems renewing my membership or reserving my High Holy Day Tickets?  Please email info@templealiyah.org to answer all your questions.   What if I want a paper ticket reservation form? If you have already requested a paper ticket reservation form and/or received a paper renewal packet, keep your eye on your mailbox. If you have not, email info@templealiyah.org to request a paper form.

 

What happens in the synagogue for Rosh Hashanah?

Rosh Hashanah is primarily a liturgical or synagogue holiday with a few core elements, the blowing of a shofar (the horn of a ram or other animal) and distinctive holiday melodies, which are reprised repeatedly during Rosh Hasha­nah, and again on Yom Kippur.

Rosh Hashanah prayers sound the themes of judgment and repentance, and the recurrent image of God as a fa­ther-king is given voice in one of the most memorable prayers and melodies of all the Jewish holidays, Avinu Malkeynu, “Our Father, our King.”

During the morning service on Rosh Hashanah, the Torah readings from Genesis 21 or Genesis 22 are always a focal point. Among the most powerful and problematic stories in the Torah, Genesis 21 tells of the birth of Isaac, the casting out of Hagar and Ishmael into the desert, and their subsequent deliverance. Genesis 22 contains the terrible test of Abraham’s faith, when he is asked to sacrifice his son, Isaac. This story is referred to as “the binding of Isaac,” or

the Akedah.

 

What happens at Synagogue Yom Kippur day?

Yom Kippur service runs throughout most of the day: Shacharit, the morning service, includes a Torah reading from Leviticus that describes the sacrificial rites for Yom Kippur in the Temple. The morning Haftarah reading is Isaiah’s passionate sermon demanding jus­tice and decrying religious hypocrisy.

Musaf, the service that follows Shacharit, includes recitation of the martyrology, which begins with Israel’s Martyrdom continues through the Crusade period, and describes other persecutions culminating with the Nazi Holocaust.

 

General Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur Frequently Asked Questions

 

What are the “Days of Awe?”

Rosh Hashanah is the first of the High Holy Days, and begins a ten-day period of soul searching that concludes with Yom Kippur. Tradition tells us that on Rosh Hashanah the names of the righteous are inscribed in the Book of Life, guaranteeing another year of life. For those who are not entirely good, judgment is suspended until Yom Kippur, when our good works and acts of repentance during those 10 days to turn away (make teshuvah) from our wicked ways. Synagogue services give us time to reflect and resolve, but prayer and meditation are not sufficient to wipe the slate clean. The only way to expunge sins committed against other people is by sincerely apologizing and asking for forgiveness.

 

What do the words Rosh Hashanah mean?

Rosh Hashanah is Hebrew for head or beginning of the year. In the Torah, we read, “In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, there shall be a sacred assembly, a cessation from work, a day of commemoration pro­claimed by the sound of the Shofar.” Therefore, we celebrate Rosh Hashanah on the first day of Tishrei, the sev­enth month of the Jewish calendar. The number assigned to the Jewish year changes on Rosh Hashanah based on the ancient rabbinic reckoning of when the world was created.

 

Why is the New Year in the fall? In addition, why do we start the New Year in the seventh month?

Our ancestors had several dates in the calendar marking the beginning of important seasons of the year. Originally, the first month of the Hebrew calendar was Nisan, in the spring. However, the first of Tishrei, in the fall, was the beginning of the economic year, when the old harvest year ended and the new one began. Around the month of Tishrei, the first rains came in the land of Israel, and the soil was plowed for the winter grain. Eventually, the first of Tishri became not only the beginning of the economic year, but the beginning of the spiritual year as well.

 

What is done in the home for Rosh Hashanah?

The focus of home celebration is the evening meal served at the start of Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah menus vary among Jewish subcultures and from household to household, but two customs are pervasive: using a round challah (with or without raisins) as a symbol of the cycle of the year, and starting Rosh Hashanah with apples dipped in honey as a harbinger of a sweet year.

 

What is Tashlich?

It is traditional to go to a lake, river, or harbor for a ceremony called Tashlich, from the Hebrew for “send off’ or “cast away.” An informal and non-liturgical custom, people symbolically cast off their sins by emptying crumbs from their pockets into the water.

 

What does Yom Kippur mean?

Yom Kippur means “Day of Atonement.” Yom Kippur, the most somber day of the year is called Shabbat Shabbaton, the “Sabbath of Sabbaths” in the Bible. On this day devoted to reflection and repentance, healthy adults fast from all food and drink from sunset to sunset.

 

What happens in the home for Yom Kippur?

Although this is probably the least home-based of all holidays, it begins and ends with a family meal. The evening meal is cooked with a mind to the fast ahead, so generally, it is neither too heavy nor too spicy. Unlike other festival dinners, candle lighting takes place afterward, marking the official start of Yom Kippur and the fast.

After eating and before lighting the festival candles, it is traditional to light a candle in memory of family members who have died. Special yahrzeit (“year’s-time”) candles are available in our Women of Aliyah Judaica shop. These candles are lit without formal blessing, though some people say a silent prayer.

 

After eating, the Yom Kippur candles are lit with the following blessing:

Baruch Ata Adonai, Eloheynu Melech Ha-olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu l’hadlik ner shel Yom HaKippurim.

Blessed are You, Lord our God, Ruler of the universe who has taught us the way of holiness through the Mitzvot, and calls us to light the Yom Kippur light.

Yom Kippur ends with a light meal to break the fast. This repast has no formal rituals or ceremony apart from the blessing over bread, Hamotzi. Food prepared in advance is usually set out, buffet style, while family and friends discuss the relative difficulty of their fasts and the content of their rabbis’ sermons. It is a mitzvah to invite to your table anyone who might have nowhere else to break the fast. Many families contribute both money and canned goods to help feed the hungry. Synagogues often collect food for distribution to local pantries.

 

How do we atone for our sins?

Yom Kippur atones only for sins between humanity and God, not for sins against another person. To atone for sins against another person, you must first apologize, righting the wrongs you committed if possible. This must all be done before the conclusion of Yom Kippur.

 

What is the Jewish definition of sin?

In Judaism, the word “sin” has different connotations than it does in our wider culture. “Sin” in Judaism is generally not something for which a person will be punished in the afterlife, but is rather an improper act for which one can ask forgiveness—not just of God, but of other human beings as well.

 

What is Kol Nidre?

Services begin with the haunting melody of Kol Nidre, the opening prayer and the name of the evening service. Kol Nidre is an Aramaic declaration that nullifies all the vows and promises that each person will make to God and to him/herself in the coming year, an acknowledgment of the weakness of human resolution.

 

Why is the Book of Jonah read on Yom Kippur?

The Book of Jonah was selected for the haftarah reading for the Mincha (afternoon) service on Yom Kippur because God is represented there as the God of all nations. The Book of Jonah also addresses itself to another High Holy Days theme: that a person can abandon one’s evil ways, accept responsibility for one’s own actions, and return to God.

 

What is Yizkor?

Yizkor is a service that recalls loved ones who have died. Yizkor takes place on Yom Kippur, both at the early and late services.

 

What is the Ne’ilah service?

Yom Kippur services conclude with Ne’ilah, from the Hebrew “to lock,” referring to the symbolic closing of heaven’s gates and the “book of life.” Many people stand throughout this short service, which ends with a final shofar blast. In many congregations, Ne’ilah is followed by a short evening or Ma’ariv service, and Havdallah, the ceremony that ends this holiday as well as the Sabbath.

 

Why do we wear white on Yom Kippur? Why do we cover the Torah scrolls with white covers?

It is customary to wear white on the holiday, which symbolizes purity and calls to mind the promise that our sins shall be made as white as snow (Isaiah 1:18). Traditionally, Jews are buried in plain white garments. Wearing white on Yom Kippur reminds us of our mortality. Some wear sneakers or other rubber-soled shoes out of deference to the ancient practice of avoiding leather shoes, which were a symbol of luxury.

 

Why are the confessions done in the plural?

The communal confession is called the Vidui. It contains a litany of human sins, and the entire congregation recites it collectively and in the plural emphasizing communal responsibility for sins.

 

High Holy Day VOCABULARY

High Holy Days: Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

L’shanah Tovah Tikatayvu: “May you be inscribed for a good year.” This is the Rosh Hashanah greeting that expresses the hope that all friends and loved ones will be written in the Book of Life and granted happiness and fulfillment in the year ahead.

Shofar: The shofar is made from the horn of a ram. It is sounded every morning during the month preceding Rosh Hashanah, on Rosh Hashanah itself, and again at the conclusion of Yom Kippur. Some say that its piercing sound is a “wake-up call” that reminds people to engage in the process of repentance.

TeshuvahLiterally means, “returning,” a Hebrew term for repentance.

Tzedakah“Righteousness,” often mistranslated as “charity.”

Yahrzeit Candle: Memorial candle lit on the anniversary of a loved one’s death, and on those days when Yizkor is recited. Yizkor is recited on Yom Kippur.

Yom Tov: Literally “a good day.” The term has come to mean “holy day.” It is often pronounced Yuntiff (the Yiddish pronunciation) and the standard holiday greeting is “Gut Yuntiff.”

Mon, October 3 2022 8 Tishrei 5783