The Gustavian Weekly

Gustavus community celebrates Rash Hashanah at Chapel | The Gustavian Weekly

By Parker Lindberg - Staff Writer | October 4, 2019 | News

On October 1, members of the Gustavus community celebrated the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah with a chapel service led by Dr. Marian Broida, Interfaith Program Coordinator of the Chaplains’ Office.

“We are flawed human beings struggling to do better in an uncertain world. We might as well do it with joy,” Dr. Broida said during a special chapel service Tuesday morning.

Rosh Hashanah, translating to “head of the year”, is a two-day celebration of the Jewish New Year. It begins a ten-day period of self-reflection, ending with the observance of Yom Kippur.

During these holy days, Jews traditionally participate in a period of self-reflection, and according to traditional metaphor, the fate of each person is determined for the next year during this time. Broida adds that Rosh Hashanah, like most Jewish holidays is community-based, but can also be very personal. It is a time for “repentance, prayer, and charity”. “Together, these three strengthen us as individuals and communities”  Dr. Broida said.

Rosh Hashanah traditionally begins at sunset, often observed with a meal, and is celebrated with traditions including readings from the Torah, the blowing of a ram’s horn or “shofar”, and festive foods including apples dipped in honey.

Yom Kippur, occurring at the end of the ten-day period, is a one-day holiday beginning at sunset and is traditionally observed with a twenty-five-hour period of fasting. Known as the “Day of Repentance,” Jews might spend most of the time in prayer or synagogue. Abstaining from work and personal pleasure is also a common observance. As with the entire ten-day period, atonement and repentance are some of the core themes of Yom Kippur. The holiday falls on Oct. 8 and 9 this year.

The service given on Tuesday morning, the second day of Rosh Hashanah, included opening remarks from Dr. Broida, modern and traditional readings given by students and other members of the Gustavus community, and concluded with the sounding of the shofar and the treat of apples and honey.

Dr. Broida invited attendees to observe the “paradox of Rosh Hashanah”, which is a time of both “delight and solemnity”.

Dr. Broida also remarked that she was glad to be able to hold the service at Gustavus. Given that the nearest synagogues are at least an hour away, the service is a good opportunity for members of the community to observe the holiday.

To her, the holiday is “like a fresh start… It’s a very powerful and meaningful time,” Broida said.

dipped in honey.

Yom Kippur, occurring at the end of the ten-day period, is a one-day holiday beginning at sunset and is traditionally observed with a twenty-five-hour period of fasting. Known as the “Day of Repentance,” Jews might spend most of the time in prayer or synagogue. Abstaining from work and personal pleasure is also a common observance. As with the entire ten-day period, atonement and repentance are some of the core themes of Yom Kippur. The holiday falls on Oct. 8 and 9 this year.

The service given on Tuesday morning, the second day of Rosh Hashanah, included opening remarks from Dr. Broida, modern and traditional readings given by students and other members of the Gustavus community, and concluded with the sounding of the shofar and the treat of apples and honey.

Dr. Broida invited attendees to observe the “paradox of Rosh Hashanah”, which is a time of both “delight and solemnity”.

Dr. Broida also remarked that she was glad to be able to hold the service at Gustavus. Given that the nearest synagogues are at least an hour away, the service is a good opportunity for members of the community to observe the holiday.

To her, the holiday is “like a fresh start… It’s a very powerful and meaningful time,” Broida said.

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