Rosh Hashanah Chavurah Machzor / Prayerbook

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vbav atr

Our God and God of all generations, grant that our prayers may reach You.


vbav atr




hat does a person expect to attain when entering the synagogue? In pursuit of learning, one goes to a library; for aesthetic enrichment, one goes to the art museum; for pure music, to the concert hall. What, then, the purpose of going to the synagogue? Many are the facilities which help us to acquire the important worldly virtues, skills and techniques. But where should one learn about the insights of the spirit? Many are the opportunities for public speech; where are the occasions for inner silence? It is easy to find people who will teach us to be eloquent; but who will teach us how to be still? It is surely important to have a sense of reverence. Where should one learn the general wisdom of compassion? The fear of being cruel? The danger of being callous? Where should one learn that the greatest truth is found in contrition? Important and precious as the development of our intellectual faculties is, the cultivation of a sensitive conscience is indispensable. We are all in danger of sinking into the darkness of vanity; we are all involved in worshipping our own egos. Where should we become sensitive to the pitfalls of cleverness, or to the realization that expediency is not the acme of wisdom? We are constantly in need of experiencing moments in which the spiritual is as relevant and as concrete, for example, as the aesthetic. Everyone has a sense of beauty; everyone is capable of distinguishing 1

between the beautiful and the ugly. But we must learn to be sensitive to the spirit. It is in the synagogue where we must try to acquire such inwardness, such sensitivity. — A b r a h a m J o s h ua H e s c h e l

Tallit Blessing In every generation they shall put fringes on the corners of their garments. (Numbers 15:38)

Let all my being praise God. Robed in glory and majesty. Garbed in radiance and splendor, Enfolded in light as in a garment, Unfolding the heavens as a curtain. (Psalm 104)

As we wrap ourselves in the Tallit may the Holy One surround us with light and open our hearts to ways of holiness. May we be embraced by Your presence and enveloped in blessing.

Baruch atah Adonai, eloheinu melech ha’olam, asher kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu l’hitateif batzitzit. 2

Blessed is the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, whose mitzvot add holiness to our lives and who gave us the mitzvah to wrap ourselves in the tzitzit.


L’Sha-nah To-vah Ti-ka-tei-vu A Happy New Year, Happy New Year to You May you be written for a good year


Return again, return again Return to the land of your soul Return again, return again Return to the land of your soul Return to what you are, Return to who you are, Return to where you are, Born and reborn again…


On the new moon of Tishrei The month of harmony’s return


We remember and renew the dance of creation Inside us In community In the way we touch life. On the seventh month We gather to renew ourselves on life’s way By pausing and looking inward To behold the landscape of our traveled way. During these days We call up the fearful demons Who hinder our path And sing to them our shadow’s song Until we wrest from them a blessing. At this time of year We heal our wounds By invoking the ancient ways of restoring inner peace. We cast our crumbs to the river Beat our chests blow the shofar Confess the crooked way. We sing dance share our food Tell our stories and pray. And in the pause of celebration We are free to forgive, embrace, reconcile And restore at-one-ment To the soul Until we find again Our common heart of joy. — Lyn n G ot t l i e b


It is Rosh HaShanah – the beginning of the New Year. God, You have given this New Year to us to use as we choose. We can waste it or we can use it well. We can make it a year to be remembered-for its joy, its holiness, its worthwhile achievements-or we can let it become a year filled with pettiness and complaint. What we do this coming year matters because we invest in it a year of precious life. But when next Rosh HaShanah comes, this year will be gone forever. So we pray: may the year to come be a gain, not a loss; good, not evil; a success not a failure. There will be beauty during this coming year and we do not want to miss it. There also will be cries of people in distress. We want to hear them and to do all in our power to respond. There will be moments of temptation, but we must not yield. There will be opportunities to do mitzvoth, and we must be ready. The old year is gone. The ledger is closed. Our Book of Life is now open to a new page, a gap bright with whiteness. No sins blot it, no indiscretions blemish it. Slowly the invisible pen begins to record our life; how shall we direct the pen? When next Rosh HaShanah comes, may we be able to look back without regret and look forward without anxiety. May Rosh HaShanah inspire us with an eager spirit and a thankful heart.


Consider the forces that rule our lives, the currents of instinct and longing that rise from the depths of our being, the tides of ambition and desire that sweep away our will, the little waves of habit and routine in which our vision drowns – yet the Eternal is greater than these, and God’s still small voice louder than their roaring. On the New Year we acknowledge God as Sovereign; may the Eternal reign over us and within us.


— Please RISE —

The Sh’ma and Its Blessings

Bar’chu et Adonai ham-vo-rach Ba-ruch Adonai ham’vo-rach l’o-lam va-ed. Praise Adonai to whom our praise is due! Praise Adonai to whom our praise is due, now and forever!



Ba-ruch a-tah Adonai, e-lo-hei-nu me-lech ha-o-lam, yo-tzeir or u’vo-rei choshech, o-she sha-lom u’vo-rei et ha-kol. Ha-me-ir la-a-retz v’la-da-rim a-le-ha b’ra-cha-mim, uv’tu-vo m’cha-deish b’chol yom ta-mid ma-a-sei v’rei-shit. Mah ra-bu ma-a-se-cha Adonai, ku-lam b’choch-ma a-si-ta, mal-a ha-a-retz kin-yane-cha. Tit-ba-rach Adonai e-lo-hei-nu al she-vach ma-a-sei ya-de-cha, v’al m’orei or she-a-si-ta y’fa-a-ru-cha se-lah. Ba-ruch a-tah Adonai, yo-tzeir ha-m’o-rot. We praise You, Eternal God, Sovereign of the universe, whose mercy makes light to shine over the earth and all its inhabitants, and whose goodness renews day by day the work of creation. How manifold are Your works, O God! In wisdom You have made them all. The heavens declare Your glory. The earth reveals Your creative power. You form light and darkness, bring harmony into nature, and peace to the human heart. We praise You, O God, Creator of light.



You were God And we were Israel, God alone And lonely people, Long ago. You loved us a great love And You taught us How to respond to You Through Mitzvot Recollections Celebrations Torah They are the light of our eyes The uniqueness of our being. In the joy of them You have drawn us close to You. In the truth of them We have discovered You, the only One. We are together still. You respond to every people In Your chosen way. With Your love You have chosen to respond to us. With our love We offer You our praise.


V’ha-eir ei-nei-nu, b’to-ra-te-cha, v’da’beik li-bei-nu b’mitz-vo-te-cha, v’ya-cheid l’va’vei-nu, l’a’ha-vah u’l’yir-ah et sh’me-cha. V’lo nei-vosh l’o-lam va-ed. Ki v’sheim kod-sh’cha ha-ga-dol v’ha-no-rah ba-tach-nu, na-gi-lah v’nis-m’cha bishu-a-te-cha. Enlighten our eyes with your teaching; let our hearts cling to your commands. Unify our hearts in love and awe of your name, that we might never be ashamed or humiliated, nor ever stumble. For in your great, holy and awesome name have we trusted; let us be glad and rejoice in your deliverance.

Sh’ma Yis-ra-el, Adonai E-lo-hei-nu, Adonai E-chad. Ba-ruch sheim k’vod mal-chu-to l’o-lam va-ed. Hear, O Israel, Adonai is our God, Adonai is One! Blessed is God’s glorious majesty forever and ever!


— Please be seated —

V’a-hav-ta et Adonai e-lo-he-cha, b’chol l’vav-cha, u’v ’chol naf-sh’cha, u’v ’chol m’o-de-cha. V’ha-yu ha-d’va-rim ha-ei-leh, a-sher a-no-chi m’tza-v’cha ha-yom al l’va-ve-cha. V’shi-nan-tam l’va-ne-cha, v’di-bar-ta bam, b’shiv-t’cha b’vei-techa uv’lech-t’cha va-de-rech uv’shoch-b’cha uv’ku-me-cha. Uk’shar-tam l’ot al ya-de-cha, v’ha-yu l’to-ta-fot bein ei-ne-cha. Uch’tav-tam al m’zu-zot bei-te-cha u’vish-a-re-cha. L’ma-an tiz-k’ru va-a-si-tem et kol mitz-vo-tai, vi-h’yi-tem k’do-shim lei-lo-heichem. A-ni Adonai e-lo-hei-chem, a-sher ho-tzei-ti et-chem mei-e-retz mitz-rayim, li-h’yot la-chem lei-lo-him, a-ni Adonai e-lo-hei-chem. You shall love Adonai your God with all your mind, with all your strength, with all your being. Set these words, which I command you this day, upon your heart. Teach them faithfully to your children; speak of them in your home and on your


way, when you lie down and when you rise up. Bind them as a sign upon your hand, let them be a symbol before your eyes; inscribe them on the doorposts of your house, and on your gates. Be mindful of all My Mitzvot, and do them: so shall you consecrate yourselves to your God. I am your Eternal God who led you out of Egypt to be your God; I am your Eternal God.

REDEMPTION The Kabbalists tell us that God, in creating the world, took some of its fresh new light, and poured it into each of the vessels of the spheres of the universe. But such powerful light was stronger than the vessels, and so they weakened and cracked. Thus, the precious light spilled out, falling down and down, through all the worlds, until it reached into the lowest world, our own. As the sparks of light fell, they took on forms, and embedded themselves in physical things – wood and water, plants and paper and living creatures. Since that time, the sparks yearn to return to the Source of all light – the single, holy light from which they fell. And so, when we do a mitzvah with food or plants or paper or another human being; when we thank the Creator for having formed this beautiful and strong and fragrant thing, we awaken the spark of light within, and suddenly its fire starts to grow, and it rises, flaming higher and higher and higher, soon to be reunited with its Source. Thus, we have the power, through each mitzvah we do, to redeem the sparks of light. In just such a way God redeemed us from the tyranny of the Egyptians. 12

As we sing the song of the redeemed, standing jubilant upon the Red Sea’s shore, may we hearken to the Eternal’s call to awaken every spark whose time it is to soar.

Mi cha-mo-cha ba-ei-lim Adonai, mi ka-mo-cha ne’e-dar ba-ko-desh, no-rah t’hi-lot, o-she fe-leh. Who is like You, Eternal One, among the gods that are worshiped? Who is like You, majestic in holiness, awesome in splendor, doing wonders?

A new song the redeemed sang to Your name. At the shore of the sea, saved from destruction, they proclaimed Your sovereign power:

Adonai yim-loch l’o-lam va-ed. “The Eternal will reign for ever and ever.”

Rock of Israel, come to Israel’s help! Fulfill Your promise of redemption for Judah and Israel! Our Redeemer is the God of all Creation, the Holy One of Israel. Blessed is Adonai, the Redeemer of Israel.



— Please rise —

Adonai s’fa-tai tif-tach u-fi ya-gid t’hi-la-te-cha. Eternal God, open my lips, that my mouth may declare Your glory!

Praised be our God, the God of our fathers and our mothers: God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob; God of Sarah, God of Rebekah, God of Leah and God of Rachel. Great, mighty, and awesome God, God supreme. Ruler of all the living, Your ways are ways of love. You remember the faithfulness of our ancestors, and in love bring redemption to their children’s children for the sake of Your name. You are our Sovereign and our Help, our Redeemer and our Shield. We praise You, O God, Shield of Abraham, Protector of Sarah.


Zoch-rei-nu l’cha-yim, me-lech cha-feitz ba-cha-yim, v’chot-vei-nu b’sei-fer hacha-yim, l’ma-an-cha e-lo-him cha-yim. Remember us unto life, Sovereign who delights in life, and inscribe us in the Book of Life, for Your sake, O God of life. You are our Sovereign and our Help, our Savior and our Shield. Blessed is the Eternal One, the Shield of Abraham, Protector of Sarah.

Great is Your might, Eternal One, in this world; great is Your power in the worlds beyond. Your love sustains the living, Your great compassion is the source of life. Your power is in the help that comes to the falling, in the healing that comes to the sick, in the freedom You bring to the captive, in the faith You keep with those who sleep in the dust. Who is like You, Mighty One? Who is Your equal, Author of life and death, Source of salvation? Who is like You, Source of mercy? In compassion You sustain the life of your children. We trust in You to restore our life. Blessed in the Eternal One, Source of all life.



oday is the Day of Judgment. Today we see ourselves as we truly are. In a few moments we shall hear the U’n’taneh Tokef prayer – an awesome prayer on an awe-filled day. Today we are reminded how precious and fleeting is life. U’n’taneh Tokef declares that in the year to come “some will live and some will die.” The year to come will bring death: that is the inescapable certainty that haunts us each year. For some, the next year will bring the gradual ebbing of our powers; for others, the sudden, unfair catastrophe of death. The question which each of us must answer in the hidden chambers of our souls and our hears is simply this: knowing that next year may bring hardship and death, will we fill our days with the force, the promise, and power of life?

U’n’ta-neh to-kef k’du-shat ha-yom, ki hu no-ra v’a-yom, u’vo ti-na-seh mal-chu-te-cha, v’yi-kon b’che-sed ki-se-cha, v’tei-shev a-lav b’e-met.


Let us proclaim the sacred power of this day; it is awesome and full of dread. For on this day Your dominion is exalted, Your throne established in steadfast love; There in truth You reign. In truth You are Judge and Arbiter, Counsel and Witness. You write and You seal, You record and recount. You remember deeds long forgotten. You open the book of our days, And what is written there proclaims itself, For it bears the signature of every human being.

The great Shofar is sounded, the still, small voice is heard; the angels, gripped by fear and trembling, declare in awe: This is the Day of Judgment! For even the hosts of heaven are judged, as all who dwell on earth stand arrayed before You.


As the shepherd seeks out the flock, And makes the sheep pass under the staff, so do You muster and number and consider every soul, setting the bounds of every creature’s life, and decreeing its destiny.

B’rosh Ha-sha-nah yi-ka-tei-vun, u’v ’Yom Tzom Kippur yei-cha-tei-mun.

On Rosh HaShanah, it is written; on Yom Kippur it is sealed: Who shall live and who shall die. Who shall be pierced by envy, and who shall be torn by resentment; Who shall be tormented by the fire of ambition, and whose hopes shall be quenched by the waters of failure; Who shall hunger for approval, and who shall be stuffed with selfishness; Who shall be content with his lot, and who shall wander in search of satisfaction; Who shall be poor in her own eyes, and who shall be rich in mitzvot;

B’rosh Ha-sha-nah yi-ka-tei-vun, u’v ’Yom Tzom Kippur yei-cha-tei-mun.


Who shall be serene, and who shall be distraught; Who shall stand out as a Jew, and who shall fade away and assimilate; Who shall study Torah, and who shall be tight-fisted; Who shall be interdependent with others, and who shall be independent and alone; Who shall be truly alive, and who shall merely exist; But Rosh HaShanah has just begun, and the pages of the Book of Life have yet to Be inscribed. Therefore we can still change the decree, for we are a people that does not resign itself to fate.

B’rosh Ha-sha-nah yi-ka-tei-vun, u’v ’Yom Tzom Kippur yei-cha-tei-mun.

Through teshuva – repentance, through tefillah – prayer, and through tzedakah – righteous giving, we can annul the decrees. We can re-open the future. We can reclaim our lives. We can change the future by changing ourselves. We are flesh and blood. Our origin is in the dust, and our end is to be dust. But we have been created in the Divine image. Implanted within us is the ability to pray, the urge to do right, and the power to repent.


SANCTIFICATION Many are the ways of holiness; varied are its paths. There is holiness when nations meet to beat swords into plowshares, And when people of different backgrounds work together for a common future. There is holiness when people seek justice and struggle for righteousness, And when people lift up their fallen and free the captives. There is holiness when we bring consolation to the sorrowing and comfort to the silent sufferers, And when we promote family harmony. There is holiness when we respect what divides us and emphasize what unites us, And when we are willing to be laughed at for what we believe. There is holiness when we share a relationship of love with a partner, And when we remember the devotion of a parent or grandparent. There is holiness when we gather to pray to the One who gave us the power to pray. Holy, holy, holy is the Highest Power. All life can be filled with God’s glory.



We sanctify Your name on earth, even as all things, to the ends of time and space, proclaim Your holiness; and in the words of the prophet we say:

Ka-dosh, ka-dosh, ka-dosh Adonai tz’va-ot, m’lo chol ha-a-retz k’-vo-do. Holy, Holy, Holy is the God of all being, the fullness of the whole earth is God’s glory!

A-dir A-dir-rei-nu Adonai a-do-nei-nu mah-a-dir shim-cha b’chol ha-a retz! Source of our strength, sovereign God, how majestic is Your presence in all the earth!

Ba-ruch k’vod Adonai mim-ko-mo. Blessed is the glory of God in heaven and earth.


E-chad hu e-lo-hei-nu, hu a-vi-nu, hu mal-kei-nu, hu mo-shi-ei-nu; v’hu yash-mi-ei-nu b’ra-cha-mav l’ei-nei kol chai. You alone are our God and our Creator; You are our Ruler and our Helper; and in Your mercy You reveal Yourself in the sight of all the living:

A-ni Adonai e-lo-hei-chem! I AM YOUR ETERNAL GOD!

Yim-loch Adonai l’o-lam, e-lo-ha-yich tzi-yon, l’dor va-dor, ha-l’lu-yah. Adonai shall reign forever, your God, O Zion, from generation to generation. Halleluyah!

­— Please BE SEATED —


To all generations we will make known Your greatness, and to all eternity proclaim Your holiness. Your praise, O God, shall never depart from our lips.

Let us know awe again Adonai our God Help us in our regulated life In our days oppressed by mere annoyances To encounter greatness Wonder and majesty The surprise of good people The worth of each of us


Let us know hope again, Adonai our God. Help us in our placid life In our days oppressed by too much self-concern To do without that others might know having To dare an act that will better someone’s life To find the love to share another’s pain, The strength to fight for causes beyond our own contentment, The courage to face down cynicism before an honest human being.

Let us know You again, Adonai our God Help us in our unconnected life In our days oppressed by pains which have no purpose To shed our fears Of finding a reality beyond what we can see and touch That one day we might find the nerve To perceive within the seas and sky and earth and human race You.

The Eternal One shall reign for ever; your God, O Zion, from generation to generation. Halleluyah!


You are holy; awesome is Your name; there is no God but You. The God of all being is exalted by justice; the holy God is sanctified by righteousness. We praise You, O God: You reign in holiness.

In love and favor, O God, You have chosen us from all the peoples, hallowing us with Your Mitzvot. Our Sovereign, You have summoned us to Your service, that through us Your great and holy name may become known in all the earth.

Our God and God of all ages, be mindful of Your people Israel on this Day of Remembrance, and renew in us love and compassion, goodness, life, and peace. This day remember us for well-being. Amen. This day bless us with Your nearness. Amen. This day help us to live. Amen.


Our God and God of all generations, bless us with the threefold benediction of the Torah:

May God bless you and keep you!

May the light of God’s presence shine upon you and be gracious to you.

May God bestow favor upon you and give you peace.

Be this God’s will! Let all these be possible: Peace Goodness Lives that are a blessing Gracious acts The love of sharing The love of creating 26

Light unbound Torah alive Sustenance for all Abounding life. They’re there. Help us find them here.



hen we forget the essence of our own soul, when we distract our minds from attending to the substantive content of our own inner lives, everything becomes confused and uncertain. The primary role of teshuvah, which at once sheds light on the darkened zone, is for the person to return to him-or herself, to the root of his our her soul. Then we will at once return to God; to the Soul of all souls. Then we will progress continually, higher and higher, in holiness and in purity. This is true whether we consider the individual, a whole people, or the whole of humanity, or whether we consider the mending of all existence, which always becomes damaged when it forgets itself. If one should envision a return to God, without setting oneself in order, this would be a deceptive teshuvah, through which God’s name will be taken in vain. It is only through the great truth of returning to oneself that the person and the people, the world and all the worlds, the whole of existence, will return to their Creator, to be illuminated by the light of life.

— Rav



Y’h’yu l’ra-tson im-rei fi, v’heg-yon li-bi l’fa-ne-cha, Adonai tzu-ri v’go-a-li. May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart, be acceptable to You, O God, my Rock and my Redeemer.


Torah Service

Avinu Malkeinu, hear our voice.

Avinu Malkeinu, we have sinned before You.


Avinu Malkeinu, have compassion on us and on our children.

Avinu Malkeinu, make an end to sickness, war and famine.

Avinu Malkeinu, make an end to all oppression.

Avinu Malkeinu, inscribe us for blessing in the Book of Life.

Avinu Malkeinu, let the new year be a good year for us.

Avinu Malkeinu, give strength to Your people Israel.

Avinu Malkeinu, be gracious and answer us, for we have little merit. Treat us generously and with kindness and be our help. A-vi-nu mal-kei-nu, cho-nei-nu va-a-nei-nu, ki ein ba-nu ma-a-sim. A-sei i-ma-nu tz’da-kah va-che-sed v’ho’shi-ei-nu. 29

The Eternal One, the Eternal God is merciful and gracious, endlessly patient, loving, and true, showing mercy to thousands, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin, and granting pardon.

Praised be the One who in Your holiness has given the Torah to Your people Israel.

Sh’ma Yis-ra-eil Adonai e-lo-hei-nu Adonai e-chad. Hear, O Israel, Adonai is our God, Adonai is One.

E-chad e-lo-hei-nu, ga-dol a-do-nei-nu, ka-dosh v’no-rah sh’mo. Our God is One, Adonai is great; holy and awesome is Your name.

Yours, Adonai, is the greatness, the power and the glory, the victory and the majesty; for all that is in heaven and earth is Yours. Dominion is Yours, Adonai; You are supreme over all. 30


Before the R eading

Praise the One, to whom our praise is due! Praised be the One, to whom our praise is due, now and for ever!

Torah Reading For Rosh Hashanah Genesis 1:1 - 2:3



n the beginning God created the leavens and the earth. And the earth was without form and void, and there was darkness upon the face of the deep, and the spirit of God moved over the surface of the waters. Then God said: Let there be light! And there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness Night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.

God said: Let there be an expanse in the midst of the water, that it may separate water from water. God made the expanse, and it separated the water which was below the expanse from the water which was above the expanse. And it was so. God called the expanse Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.


God said: Let the water below the sky be gathered into one area, that the dry land may appear. And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the gathering of waters, Seas. And God saw that it was good. And God said: Let the earth sprout vegetation: seed-bearing plants, fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with the seed in it. And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: seed-bearing plants of every kind, and trees of every kind with the seed in it. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a third day

God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate day from night; they shall serve as signs for the set times - the days and the years; and they shall serve as lights in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth.” And it was so. God made the two great lights, the greater light to dominate the day and the lesser light to dominate the night, and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth, to dominate the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that this was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day. 33

God said: Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of heaven. God made the great sea monsters, and all the living creatures of every kind that creep, which the waters brought forth in swarms; and all the winged birds of every kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying: Be fruitful and multiply, fill the waters in the seas, and let the birds multiply on the earth. And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.


God said: Let the earth bring forth living creatures, according to their kinds: cattle, reptiles, and land animals, according to their kinds. And it was so. God made wild beasts of every kind and cattle of every kind, and every kind of reptile. And God saw that it was good. And God said: Let us make a being in our image, after our likeness, and let it have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, and over the cattle; over all the earth and over every creature that crawls upon it. Thus God created us in the divine image, creating us in the image of God, creating us make and female. And God blessed us, and said to us: Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth. God said: See, I have given you every seed-bearing plant that is upon all the earth, and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit; they shall be yours for food. And to all the animals on land, to all the birds of the air, and to everything that creeps on earth, in which there is the breath of life, I give all the green plants for food. And it was so. And God saw all creation, and found it very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.


Now the whole universe—earth, sky, and all their array—was completed. With the seventh day God ended the work of creation, resting on the seventh day, with all the work completed. Then God blessed the seventh day and called it holy, for with it God had completed the work of creation.

after the reading:

Praised be the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe. You have chosen us from all peoples by giving us Your Torah. Blessed is the Eternal One, Giver of the Torah. Praised be the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe. You have given us a Torah of truth, implanting within us eternal life. Blessed is the Eternal One, Giver of the Torah.


Mi Shebeirach

Mi she-bei-rach a-vo-tei-nu m’-kor ha-b’-ra cha l’-I-mo-tei-nu May the source of strength who blessed the ones before us Help us find the courage to make our lives a blessing And let us say: Amein.

Mi She-bei-rach i-mo-tei-nu m’kor ha-b’-ra-cha la-vo-tei-nu Bless those in need of healing with r’-fu-a sh’-lei-ma The renewal of body, the renewal of spirit And let us say: Amein.


This is the Torah that Moses places before the people of Israel to fulfill the word of God.

— PLEASE be seated —


Rosh Hashanah Haftarah Reading B efore the R eading

Praised be the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, who has chosen faithful prophets to speak words of truth. We praise You for the revelation of Torah, for Moses Your servant and Israel Your people, and for the prophets of truth and righteousness. From Nehemiah 8



t the coming of the seventh month, the people of Israel were in their towns; all the people then came together as one in the square that faced the Water Gate. They asked Exra the Scribe to bring the scroll of the Torah of Moses that the Eternal One had enjoined upon Israel. On the first day of the seventh month Ezra the priest brought the Torah before the assembly, including both men and women and all who were capable of understanding it. There, in the square facing the Water Gate, he read from it from first light to midday…Then Nehemiah the governor and Ezra the priestly scribe and the levites who instructed the people said to them: “This is a day holy to your Eternal God; do not mourn or weep” (All the people had been weeping as they heard the words of the Torah.) He then said to them: “Go now, eat of the best and drink sweet wine and send portions to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to the Eternal One: do not be sad, for the joy of the Eternal is your strength.”

After the R eading


Praised be the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, Rock of all creation, righteous in all generations, the faithful God whose word is deed, whose every command is just and true. For the Torah, for the privilege of worship, for the prophets, and for this (Shabbat and this) Day of Remembrance that You, our Eternal God, have given us (for holiness and rest,) for honor and glory, we thank and bless You. May Your name be blessed for ever by every living being, for Your word is true for ever. Blessed is God, Ruler of all the earth, for the holiness of (the Sabbath,) the House of Israel and the Day of Remembrance.

Sounding of the Shofar There are three parts to the Shofar Service: Malchuyot (Sovereignty), Zichronot (Remembrance), Shofarot (Herald of Redemption). Malchuyot proclaim that God is the Creator of the universe as well as promising that one day God’s rule will be acknowledged by all. Zichronot tell us that God is the God of history who cares about the world and remembers our deeds, both good and bad. Shofarot remind us of our past and our future, and of the final redemption yet to come.



wake, you sleepers, from your sleep! Rouse yourselves, you slumberers, our of your slumber! Examine your deeds, and turn to God in repentance. Remember your Creator, you who, caught up in the daily round, lose sight of eternal truth; you who waste your years in vain pursuits which neither benefit nor save. Look closely at yourselves; improve your ways and your deeds; every one of you give up your evil ways and your unworthy aims. — Ma i m o n i d e s



od does not stand apart from humanity and issue commands to people. God’s presence is evidenced in those qualities of the human personality and of society by which the evils of life are overcome, and latent good brought to realization. By ascribing primacy to these qualities we acclaim the sovereignty of God. — M o r d e ca i M . K a p l a n

We hope to see your glory revealed, your leadership established, all flesh serving their Creator, all evil turned to good. Every tongue singing a divine song. Every spine stretching and bending in worship. Every will surrendered to You. You be the ruler of life, now and always. 41

And we find it written, When all people become unified together then our God will be sovereign. Make us holy and make us wise. Fill our minds with your Torah. Make us good. Fill us with your goodness. Make us glad when we experience You as helper. Reside in our heart.


We must praise the God of all, the Maker of heaven and earth, who has set us apart from the other families of earth, giving us a destiny unique among the nations. We therefore bow in awe and thanksgiving before the One who is Sovereign over all, the Holy and Blessed One.


In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a Sabbath, a memorial of blowing of horns, a holy gathering. (Leviticus 23: 24)

Baruch atah adonai melech al kol ha’aretz, m’kadeish Yisrael V’Yom HaZikaron. We praise You, O God, Ruler of the universe, who hallows the House of Israel and the Day of Remembrance.

Blessed is the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, who hallows us with Mitzvot, and calls us to hear the sounds of the Shofar.

Baruch atah adonai eloheinu melech haolam shehecheyanu v’kiyemanu v’higianu lazeman hazeh. Blessed is the Eternal God, Ruler of the universe, for giving us life, for sustaining us, and for enabling us to reach this season.

The shofar is sounded:



A-re-shet s’fa-tei-nu ye-e-rav l’fa’ ne-cha eil ram v’ni-sa mei-vin u’ma-zin ma-bit u’mak-shiv l’kol t’ki-a-tei-nu u’t ’ka-bel b’ra-cha-mim u’v ’ra-tzon sei-der mal-chu-yo-tei-nu O God Supreme, accept the offering of our lips, the sound of the Shofar. In love and favor hear us, as we acclaim Your Sovereignty.



od remembers! All our ancestors live in us. Though their tongues are silent, they speak with ours. Though their hands are still, they labor through us. The past lives in us, in our very bodies. The structure of our organs, the energy that moves our muscles, the nerves and brain with which we apprehend our world, are all an inheritance from generations that have passed. We eat the fruit of threes planted by generations long gone. The joys of generations who lived before us are immortalized in music and art; the wisdom of the ancients still speaks in our literature; and the deeds of our ancestors are recorded in the annals of history. The past is not dead. It lives in us and in our world. So let us then live that the remembrance of us be for good and not for evil, for a blessing and not for a curse. — A da p t e d f r o m M i lto n S t e i n b e r g


On this Day of Remembrance we are reminded that God remembered our ancestors in times of distress and recalled the Covenant made with them. On this day we are reminded that God recalls our deeds, and promises that if we truly repent we will be remembered for good. Together we remember a year that is gone, with opportunities that can never return, and with God’s help we try to face our past. We consider the good we did and the good we failed to do; the hurts we endured and the pain we inflicted. The Book of Remembrance is now open, but the ending is not yet written. We read these verses to help us remember and repent. And God remembered Noah and all the living beings and all the animals which were with him in the Ark, and God’s spirit passed over the earth and the waters abated. And God remembered Rachel and listened to her prayer. And God heard the enslaved people’s cries, and remembered the covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Thus says the Eternal One: ‘I remember the kindness of your youth, the love you showed Me in earlier days, when you followed Me in the wilderness.’ I, even I, will blot out your transgressions, for My own sake, and your sins I will no more remember. And we remember You, O God, when we confess our iniquities and turn to You.

Ba-ruch a-tah Adonai, zo-cheir ha-brit. We praise you, O God, who remembers the covenant.



The shofar is sounded:


A-re-shet s’fa-tei-nu ye-e-rav l’fa’ ne-cha eil ram v’ni-sa mei-vin u’ma-zin ma-bit u’mak-shiv l’kol t’ki-a-tei-nu u’t ’ka-bel b’ra-cha-mim u’v ’ra-tzon sei-der zich-ro-no-tei-nu. O God Supreme, accept the offering of our lips, the sound of the Shofar. In love and favor hear us, as we invoke Your Remembrance.




ccording to the Kabbalah, redemption is not an event that will take place all at once at “the end of days” or something that concerns the Jewish people alone. It is a continual process, taking place at every moment. The good deeds of men and women are single acts in the long drama of redemption, and not only the people Israel, but the whole universe must be redeemed. There is longing for peace in the hearts of men and women. But peace is not the same as the absence of war. Peace among people depends upon a relationship of reverence for each other. Peace will not come until people return out of their exile from each other, and Sarah and Hagar, Isaac and Ishmael, can embrace upon peaceful shores. Peace will not come until we renounce excessive self-concern and all our hearts to be moved enough by the misery of our fellow human beings to dare what must be dared. — A b r a h a m J o s h ua H e s c h e l

The Shofar calls to mind our history. Abraham raised his eyes and saw a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. And on the third day, on that very morning, the sound of the Shofar grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered aloud. And David and all the House of Israel brought up the Ark of the Covenant of the Eternal One with shouting and with the sound of the Shofar.


The Shofar calls to mind our responsibilities. Cry aloud, do not hold back, lift up your voice like a Shofar and tell My people their transgression and the House of Jacob their sins. You shall cause the Shofar to be sounded… and proclaim liberty throughout the earth to all its inhabitants. The Shofar calls us to look forward to the day when our people and all peoples will acknowledge God as Sovereign of all the world. On that day the great Shofar will be sounded… and they shall come to worship on God’s holy mountain. And they shall enter a covenant to seek the Eternal One, the God of their ancestors, with all their heart and soul. And they shall make a vow to the sound of the blowing of the trumpets and the Shofarot. All the inhabitants of the world and all the dwellers on earth shall see when a sign is raised on the mountain, and when the Shofar is sounded, they shall listen.


The shofar is sounded:


A-re-shet s’fa-tei-nu ye-e-rav l’fa’ ne-cha eil ram v’ni-sa mei-vin u’ma-zin ma-bit u’mak-shiv l’kol t’ki-a-tei-nu u’t ’ka-bel b’ra-cha-mim u’v ’ra-tzon sei-der shof-ro-tei-nu. O God Supreme, accept the offering of our lips, the sound of the Shofar. In love and favor hear us, as we call to You with the sound of the Shofar.

Returning the Torah to the Ark

Let us praise the Eternal God, whose name alone is exalted.

Your splendor covers heaven and earth; You are the strength of Your people, making glorious Your faithful ones, Israel, a people close to You. Halleluyah!


Behold, a good doctrine has been given you, do not forsake it. It is a tree of life to those who hold it fast, and all who cling to it find happiness. Its ways are ways of pleasantness, and all its paths are peace. Help us to return to You, O God; then truly shall we return. Renew our days as in the past.


D’var Torah ———




Va-a-nach-nu kor’-im u-mish-ta-cha-vim u’mo-dim, lif-nei me-lech mal-chei ham’la-chim, ha-ka-dosh ba-ruch hu. We must praise the God of all, the Maker of heaven and earth, who has set us apart from the other families of earth, giving us a destiny unique among the nations. We therefore bow in awe and thanksgiving before the One who is Sovereign over all, the Holy and Blessed One.

We therefore hope, Eternal God, soon to behold the glory of Your might. Then will false gods vanish from our hearts, and the world will be perfected under Your unchallenged rule. And then will all acclaim You as their God, and, forsaking evil, turn to You alone. Let all who dwell on earth acknowledge that unto You every knee must bend and every tongue swear loyalty. Before You, Eternal God, let them humble themselves. To Your glorious name let them give honor. Let all accept the yoke of Your sovereign rule, that You may reign over them soon and for ever.


For You are sovereign, and to all eternity You will reign in glory, as it is written: “The Eternal God will reign for ever and ever.”

And it has been said: “The Eternal One shall reign over all the earth; on that day, O God, You shall be One and Your name shall be One.”



Yit-ga-dal ve-yit-ka-dash she-mei ra-ba be-al-ma di-ve-ra chi-re-u-tei, ve-yam-lich mal-chu-tei be-cha-yei-chon u-ve-yo-mei-chon u-ve-cha-yei de-chol beit Yis-ra-eil, ba-a-ga-la u-vi-ze-man ka-riv, ve-i-me-ru: a-mein. Ye-hei she-mei ra-ba me-va-rach le-a-lam u-le-al-mei al-ma-ya. Yit-ba-rach ve-yish-ta-bach, ve-yit-pa-ar ve-yit-ro-mam ve-yit-na-sei, ve-yit-ha-adar ve-yit-a-leh ve-yit-ha-lal she-mei de-ku-de-sha, be-rich hu, le-ei-la min kol bi-re-cha-ta ve-shi-ra-ta, tush be-cha-ta ve-ne-che-ma-ta, da-a-mi-ran be-al-ma, ve-I-me-ru: a-mein. Ye-hei she-la-ma ra-ba min she-ma-ya ve-cha-yim a-lei-nu ve-al kol Yis-ra-eil, ve-I-me-ru: a-mein. O-se sha-lom bi-me-ro-mav, hu ya-a-she sha-lom a-lei-nu ve-al kol Yis-ra-eil, ve-i-me-ru: a-mein. May the Source of peace send peace to all who mourn, and comfort to all who are bereaved. Amen.


BENEDICTION And now, at the beginning of a new year, we pray for blessing: The spirit of wisdom and understanding. Amen. The spirit of insight and courage Amen. The spirit of knowledge and reverence. Amen. May we overcome trouble, pain, and sorrow. Amen. May our days and years increase. Amen.

Eternal our God and God of our people, renew us for a good year. Amen and Amen.


COMPILED AND EDITED BY CANTOR ERIN FRANKEL AND RABBI ANDREA LONDON DESIGNED BY MADELEINE KEMENY SOURCES: MACHZOR RUACH CHADASHAH Services for the Days of Awe. Union of Liberal and Progressive Synagogues, 2003. The Montagu Centre, 21 Maple Street, London, W1T 4BE. ISBN 0 900521 21 X Printed in Great Britain by Stephen Austin & Sons Ltd, Hertford. Mahzor Hadesh Yameinu RENEW OUR DAYS A Prayer-Cycle for Days of Awe. Edited and translated by Rabbi Ronald Aigen. © 2001 Ronald Aigen. ISBN 0-9696927-3-0 Printed in Canada. Congregation Dorshei Emet, 18 Cleve Road, Dampstead, Quebec H3X 1A6 CANADA. On Wings of Awe: A Machzor for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Edited and Translated by Rabbi Richard N. Levy. © 1985 B’NAI B’RITH HILLEL FOUNDATIONS Sha’arei Or Gates of Light: Services for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Edited and arranged by Rabbi Paul J. Kipnes, Congregation Or Ami and Rabbi Jeffrey A. Marx, Sha’arei Am: The Santa Monica Synagogue.

Beth Emet The Free Synagogue • 1224 Dempster Street • Evanston, Illinois 60202 847-869-4230 •

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