Yom Kippur Blessings: For Starting Observance of the Day
On Yom Kippur, we share a holiday meal called seudat mafseket, the concluding meal before the fast begins. We begin the meal with haMotzi, the blessing over the challah
Check out the RAC's High Holiday Guide on Criminal Justice
Each day in this country, we are faced with harrowing truths about how our criminal justice system operates.
When the Synagogue Doesn't Feel Like Home
I'm uncomfortable entering unfamiliar synagogues - solely because I am mixed race, and people assume that I am not Jewish.
The Music of Avinu Malkeinu
In the game “Truth-or-Dare,” I choose “truth” nearly every time. I’m not much of a dare-taker. Thus, if you and I were playing “Special Edition Truth-or-Dare: High Holy Days,” I would confess that the prayer Avinu Malkeinu provides me with both my second-favorite liturgical moment and my second-greatest pet peeve of the year’s liturgy. (Note: Even though I may have to repent for it, I will leave you in suspense about my favorite liturgical moment and my greatest liturgical pet peeve. Also, “Special Edition Truth-or-Dare: High Holy Days” is fictional, although I hereby declare copyright in the event Mattel or Hasbro comes knocking at my door.)
It’s Never Too Late (or Too Early) for New Year Greetings
Fans of “Seinfeld” may recall an exchange between Jerry and Elaine in which they discuss the appropriate timeline for delivering new year greetings. “I once got Happy New Year'd in March … it’s pathetic,” griped Jerry.
The Jewish calendar has a natural marker for when it’s appropriate to start wishing friends and loved ones a happy New Year. The Jewish month that precedes the Jewish New Year is called Elul, and the first day of Elul, Rosh Chodesh Elul, is the official beginning of the High Holiday season.
Selichot: Warm-Up to the High Holiday Season
Ushering in the High Holiday season, Selichot – which falls this year on Saturday night, September 24th – is the warm-up stretch that precedes the spiritual workout we give our souls during the Days of Awe.
Jake, Hank, Sandy, and Me: What These Jewish Athletes Have in Common
Compared with others over the centuries, I paid a piddling price to express my pride in being a Jew. But my small act of affirmation helped seal my career choice and allowed me to feel that I was one with Jake Pitler, Hank Greenberg, and Sandy Koufax.
10 Terrific High Holiday Books for Kids
Stories are a great way to help children and young adults prepare for Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur. Here are 10 High Holiday-themed books to share with the kids in your life.
Redemption…With Popcorn: Five Movies for Selichot
Elul is famously a month of t'shuvah, returning and atonement, and these five films anticipate the penitential prayers.
Apples and a Different Kind of Honey
Every year, I set out apples and honey on our holiday table even though I don’t like traditional bee honey. This year, I have a solution.