Rosh Hashanah Edition
A: October 3, October 12, and April 11.
A: Three of the highest holy days in Judaism are Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Passover. The JCC closes its doors for one day in accordance with each holiday.
A: This year Rosh Hashanah starts at sundown on October 2nd and ends at sundown on October 4th; Yom Kippur begins at sundown on October 11th and ends at sundown on October 12th; Passover begins at sundown on April 10th and ends at sundown on April 18th.
A: Jewish holidays occur on specific Hebrew calendar days. The Hebrew calendar is based on three astronomical phenomena: the rotation of the earth about its axis (a day); the revolution of the moon about the earth (a month); and the revolution of the earth about the sun (a year). The civil calendar, used by most of the world is not based on moon cycles for the month. This causes the Hebrew date and the civil date to be very different and causes Jewish holidays to occur on varying civil calendar days each year.
A: The year 2016 in the civil calendar translates to the year 5776 in the Hebrew calendar. The year number on the Hebrew calendar represents the number of years since creation, calculated by adding up the ages of people in the bible back to the time of creation. The civil calendar is based on the birth of Jesus Christ. A.D and B.C. refer to dates before and after the birth of Christ to differentiate the times. Jews do not believe that Jesus Christ is the messiah and do not follow a Christian based calendar year.
The basic Hebrew calendar year consists of twelve lunar months alternating between 29 and 30 days. In leap years an additional month, is added resulting in thirteen lunar months in a year.
A: Rosh Hashanah is celebrated on the first two days of the month called Tishrei. Yom Kippur is always on the 10th of Tishrei. Passover always starts on the 15th of the month called Nisan and is celebrated for eight days.
A: Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year.
A: Rosh is a Hebrew word meaning “head.” Hashanah is a Hebrew word meaning the “the year.” When combined, Rosh Hashanah literally translates to “head of the year.”
A: There are many customs for this holiday the most common customs of this holiday are as follows: going to temple to recite prayers in accordance to the holiday; sounding a ram’s-horn trumpet, called a “shofar”; eating apples and honey as well as many treats made with honey.
A: A shofar used by ancient Jews in religious ceremonies and as a battle signal is now sounded at Rosh Hashanah. One reason to blow the shofar on Rosh is because the shofar was blown at Mt. Sinai when the Torah was given to the Jewish people. Blowing the shofar reminds the Jewish people to rededicate themselves to study the Torah and to remind God of their original commitment to the Torah and to one God. Dipping apples in honey is symbolic. The apple represents the “head” of the New Year and the honey represents the “sweetness” that they hope the New Year brings.
A: There are many different greetings for this holiday. You can wish someone a happy holiday or in Hebrew a, “Chag semeach.” The most common greeting on Rosh Hashanah is to wish someone a, “L’Shana Tova,” which is a Hebrew phrase meaning have a good year. “L’Shana Tova Umetukah,” is an even nicer greeting meaning have a good and sweet year.
Later on this year we will provide all our members with a brand new update about our closings regarding the upcoming holidays.
Until then we wish all our Jewish and gentile members a, “L’shana tova umetukah!” See everyone next year!