Holidays and Festivals

According to Jewish tradition, we celebrate the High Holidays, Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur. We also observe what are called the “pilgrimage festivals.” These are Sukkot and Simchat Torah, Passover and Shavuot. On Sukkot, our Brotherhood and Sisterhood work together with students and youth groups to build and decorate an outdoor Sukkah in the Courtyard and an inside Sukkah in the Sanctuary.

The week of Sukkot ends with Simchat Torah. We have a cherished tradition of parading our Torahs throughout our sanctuary and eventually unrolling one Torah as we encircle our Social Hall with all of our children seated in the middle. The children are surrounded by adults holding our sacred scripture. Our rabbi gives a “walking tour” of our history as outlined in the Torah which culminates with our finishing the entire Torah and then beginning anew as we might with a favorite book that we read and reread, finding new meaning and nuance each time. Special treats always follow. This is a night you won’t want to miss. For those who wish to observe Yizkor, our clergy conducts a Memorial Service as well.

We observe the springtime holidays of Passover and Shavuot with worship services and Yizkor Memorial Services, as is the custom. Often temple members, friends and guests join together for a Congregational Passover Seder as well.

Chanukah is celebrated in many ways – with parties and candles, of course. The rabbi and cantor surprise us each Purim with their costumes. The Purim Carnival is open to the community. Young and older join together for the Purim “Shpiel,” the play and parody of the festival.