Shanah Tovah! Evansville Living wishes a happy new year to our Jewish readers across the Tri-State.
Rosh Hashanah, which began Monday, is one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar. It marks the beginning of the new year and is celebrated by the blowing of the shofar, a trumpet made from a ram’s horn. Rosh Hashanah commemorates the creation of the world and begins the 10 days of penitence culminating in Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year in Judaism reserved for atonement and repentance.
“As we prepare for Yom Kippur, these 10 days of atonement, this is a time where we are supposed to think about the changes we want to make: the way we can make our lives better, the way we can improve our relationships, the way we can improve our connection to do what God wants us to do,” said Rabbi Gary Mazo of Evansville’s Temple Adath B’nai Israel at Tuesday’s Rosh Hashanah service.
The Jewish new year is a time to reflect on prayers and to look forward to a good year ahead. Rosh Hashanah celebrations are filled with mitzvahs (commandments from God), a festive meal, and of course, the sounding of the shofar. Throughout the course of the next 10 days, participants reflect on past mistakes and make amends with others as they pray and perform good deeds.
Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, will begin at sundown on Sept. 15 and last until nightfall the next day, during which many Jews traditionally fast as a way to cleanse the body and spirit during repentance.
Learn more about Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur at Temple Adath B’nai Israel, 8440 Newburgh Road, or templeabi.org.
Photos provided by Tory Schendel Cox.