Sukkot…commences the Season of Joy…
Sukkot is the Jewish festival of booths and giving thanks for the first fruits fall harvest. It is also the commemoration of the forty years of Jewish wandering in the desert after Sinai.
Sukkot”Season of our Joy” is celebrated five days after Yom Kippur on the 15th of Tishrei and is marked by several distinct traditions. One tradition, which takes the commandment to “dwell in booths” literally, is to build a sukkah, a booth or hut. A sukkah is erected by the Brotherhood during this festival. The students of our Religious School decorate the sukkah in a joyous celebration.
The Torah commands, “You shall take on the first day the fruit of goodly trees, branches of palms, and boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook, and you shall rejoice before Adonai your God for Seven days” (Lev. 23:40). The etrog is a yellow, lemon like fruit and the lulav is the interwoven branches of palm, willow, and myrtle. The Lulav is waved in six directions – north, south, east, west, up and down, symbolizing that we can find God and God’s blessing in any direction we turn and continue to sing until every child (young and old) has a chance with a Lulav and Etrog. A mitzvah is performed by holding the lulav with the right hand, and the etrog with the left and the following blessing is recited
“Barukh atah Adonai Eloheinu Melekh ha-olam asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav vitzivano al n’tilat lulav.”
Blessed are You, Adonai our God, Ruler of the Universe, who makes us holy through the commandments and commands us concerning the (lifting of the) lulav.
This is followed by the Shehekheyanu.
Celebrating Sukkot at Temple Israel
EREV SUKKOT: We begin the evening with a “Bring a Dairy Dish” Dinner followed by services. We wave our Lulav (date palms, willows and myrtle held together by a woven palm branch) and Etrog (citron, lemon like fruit) in six directions – north, south, east, west, up and down, symbolizing that we can find God and God’s blessings in any direction we turn, and continue to sing until every child (young and old) has a chance with a Lulav and Etrog.
MORNING SERVICES are followed by “Bring a Daily DIsh to Share” luncheon.
SH’MINI ATZERET concludes Sukkot and is celebrated with Simchat Torah.
YIZKOR is a special tradition at Temple Israel. You come a few minutes early and write the name(s) of your departed loved ones on a list the Rabbi reads during the Yizkor Service.
Brotherhood installs the The Temple Israel Sukkah. Students of the Hebrew School enjoy the Decorate the Sukkah Festival on Sunday Sept 23.