Thursday, September 16th 2021   |

High Holidays

For Jews with eating disorders, new traditions aim to make Yom Kippur a safer experience


(JTA) — Shonna Levin is an Orthodox Jew, but she won’t be spending Yom Kippur in a synagogue.

The Brooklyn activist had planned to set up camp in Prospect Park, where she was going to host an all-day gathering for Jews with eating disorders for whom the holiday centered around fasting can be especially difficult.

Levin, who herself has struggled with disordered eating in the past, was...

Prayer written for Yom Kippur asks for ‘Forgiveness’

Forgiveness, written by Aaron Samuels and produced by Reboot in partnership with Hillel International, explores the transitional spiritual space that we enter on Kol Nidre when we move from Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur as part of a larger transition from one year to the next.

In this process we reflect upon our shortcomings and enter a period of repair, atonement, and forgiveness. This piece interrogates the...

President Biden delivers remarks before Yom Kippur

For millennia, Jewish communities have marked Yom Kippur as an occasion to reflect and pray; fast and seek forgiveness; account for past transgressions, and commit to future change.

At its core, this sacred and solemn day reaffirms a universal principle at the essence of our humanity: that, through word and deed, we each have the ability to right wrongs, mend rifts, and heal...

OP-ED: The obligation to remember, even on a day when we look inward


 It comes in a part of the Yom Kippur service that even many of those who are more than three-day-a-year synagogue-goers often skip in the late afternoon as the daylong fast heads towards its conclusion. In the Ashkenazi prayer book for the Day of Atonement, the martyrology service—the centerpiece of which is the poem Eleh Ezkerah, “These I Will Remember”—follows the Avodah or the description...

Yom Kippur (Chosen People)

Hundreds of pilgrims to Uman suspected of forging negative COVID tests


(JTA) — Hundreds of Israelis who traveled to Ukraine for an annual Rosh Hashanah pilgrimage to the grave of a Hasidic rabbi are suspected of using forged negative COVID tests to return to Israel after testing positive for the virus.

Tens of thousands of Israelis travel to Uman, Ukraine each year in a pilgrimage to the grave of Rabbi Nachman, the leader of the Breslov branch of...

Person in the Parsha: Vayelech



He was one of the greatest Talmud scholars of the last century, but outside of a small circle of disciples, he was never well-known. He was a tragic figure in many ways, and although few have heard of him today, he has not been totally forgotten.

Interestingly, forgetting was one of the central themes of his many teachings.


OU to host Torah Yerushalayim, a pre-Yom Kippur event

Leading rabbinic scholars, educators, and Jewish communal leaders will be featured at the Orthodox Union’s (OU) third annual Torah Yerushalayim on Sunday, September 12, 2021.

More than 3,000 men and women are expected join the virtual event, which is being hosted by OU Israel, the Israeli arm of the Orthodox Union (OU). The program will consist of five keynote addresses, 16 classes and two panels...

Off the Pulpit: Yom Kippur Connections


When I was a child and left a school to move to another city, there was a good chance that I would not see my schoolmates again. There was no social media and every lived in their own city and their own world.

Now people can be in touch with almost everyone with whom they crossed paths. We are closer to the population of our own pasts...



When Miriam was stricken with leprosy, Moses interceded briefly with God, offering only five words on his sister’s behalf: “El Na Refa Na Lah – Please God, please heal her” (Numbers 12:13).

In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Polonius asserts (during an ironically protracted oration!) that “Brevity is the soul of wit.” At this season of long sermons and lengthy liturgy, we should consider that brevity can also...