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High Holy Days 2020

Building on our months of experience with Zoom and livestreaming, K.I. leaders are creating a meaningful experience of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur for the congregation.

For most congregants, the primary experience of the holidays will need to be online this year. There are simply too many of us to gather us all safely indoors for hours of prayer, song, and checking in with each other. The virus will not give us a pass just because we have come together for a higher purpose.

K.I. members participate in Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur for many different reasons. In an ordinary year, we address many of our needs simultaneously by immersing ourselves in large gatherings and formal services. This year’s digital options, while each is pretty good at achieving one particular purpose, are not nearly as versatile.

Depending on what you seek from Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, you might choose to join in some or all of the following opportunities:

If you seek davening, please tune into the livestream at the scheduled times. There you will find meaningful yet abbreviated services broadcast from the K.I. sanctuary. You may also view the service on your Roku, Apple TV, or Kindle Fire TV, through Boxcast and the Knesset Israel channel. 

  • These will be primarily a davening experience, free of long speeches. It will include some silent prayer as well as the usual chant, Torah & Haftara and congregational participation. About 20-40 people, depending on the service, will be present in person. 
  • At K.I. Rosh Hashanah Central K.I. Yom Kippur Central the week of each holiday, you will find a link to download a digital Mahzor (to follow along), service schedules, and outlines of the heavily abridged services. 
  • Alternatively, K.I. members may borrow up to two bound Mahzorim per household (limited supply) - see the calendar for pickup times. No reservation is required.

The shofar is sounded only on the second day of Rosh Hashanah this year. We will be sounding it out the side door of the sanctuary during services, only during the Torah Service—listen for that on the livestream. We will also sound it outdoors during Family Services.

We are sounding the shofar throughout the month of Elul—at 9:15 a.m. on Sunday mornings and at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday in the K.I. parking lot. 

If you hope for musical edification, please watch for the special email before each holiday or visit K.I. Rosh Hashanah Central / K.I. Yom Kippur Central the week of the holiday. They will contain links to videos of K.I. shlihei tzibbur singing prayers that will be left out of the abbreviated services. We hope to include a few surprises as well.

If you crave insight, please also watch for that same email or visit K.I. Rosh Hashanah Central / K.I. Yom Kippur Central the week of the holiday. Sermons, the president’s address and lay divrei torah will become available a couple of days before the holiday. 

Seekers of wisdom might also attend “Prepare Your Soul” classes in late August and early September after evening davening. Facilitated by the rabbi, these Zoom sessions include opportunities for focused Torah study, personal reflection, and soulful conversation.

If you are looking for programming for family and children, please attend (in person or via livestream) special services on the afternoon of the second day of Rosh Hashanah—including shofar and tashlich (September 20)—and on Yom Kippur morning.

To attend in person, please contact Judith Weiner for important safety and health information.

Yizkor, for many an especially meaningful part of the season, will take place on Zoom on Sunday morning, September 29, 10:30-11:30 a.m. 

We have moved Yizkor to Zoom to protect our health. It’s hard, but not a total loss - the technology will also allow us to take a creative and interactive approach to the memorial prayers.

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur will be different this year. But together we will find meaning, insight, inspiration, and community.


Tue, May 11 2021 29 Iyyar 5781