High holiday services to be observed at Temple Beth El

The Hebrew month of Tishre begins at sundown on Sunday, Sept. 9. Jews around the world will gather in synagogues to welcome the year 5779, the New Year on the Jewish calendar, and begin through “repentance, prayer and good deeds” over a period of 10 days introspection, also known as “the Days of Awe,” to honor their spiritual inheritance.

The shofar, a ram’s horn whose piercing sounds are intended to “wake man from his spiritual slumber,” will be blown one-hundred times during the course of Rosh Hashanah. Prayers for compassion in divine judgment and human realms will culminate in Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

Temple Beth El, 507 Washington Ave., Dunkirk, is welcoming Sara Blumenthal, a second-year rabbinical student at Hebrew College in Newton, Massachusetts as leader of this year’s High Holiday services. She holds a bachelor’s in Psychology, Hebrew and Jewish Cultural Studies from the University of Michigan. She currently serves as Rabbinic Intern at the Boston Synagogue. She will be “bringing a passion for singing and liturgy.”

Eve of Rosh Hashanah services begin at 6 p.m. on Sept. 9 and at 9 a.m. Monday, Sept. 10. Temple Beth El is a traditional, unaffiliated synagogue. We serve our members, Hillel members, other college students, and welcome the broader Jewish community. A holiday dinner will be served following the Sunday service. There is no charge. Please let us know ahead by leaving a message at 679-7261 if you plan to stay for the meal. It is traditional to serve a round, challah bread at Rosh Hashanah. The circular shape symbolizes a king’s crown, and the cycle of the year. Sliced apples dipped in honey are eaten in the hope it will sweeten the blessings of the New Year.

Yom Kippur services begin Tuesday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. and at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 19. Yom Kippur is a day of fasting for those able to do so. After a short afternoon break, services resume at 5:30 p.m. Traditional honey cake and other desserts will be served at the break-the-fast following the close of services.

For further information, email President Linda Dunn at leibadunn@gmail.com.