Chabad of the Big Island announces that Rabbi Yehuda and Michal Kirsh have arrived in Hilo to serve the community as rabbi for the duration of the High Holiday season. They will hold synagogue services, youth programs and be available to respond to individual and community needs.
Rabbi Yehuda hails from New York and received his ordination at the Chabad Yeshiva in Melbourne, Australia. Michal is from Caracas, Venezuela, and completed her studies in Jerusalem. They arrived from Brooklyn, N.Y., with their 1-year-old daughter, Hadasa.
“Great emphasis is placed on this time of year because it is traditionally known as the time when every single member of the community has an opportunity to connect to their G-dliness,” said a Chabad spokesman. “The added spirituality of the High Holidays imbue this time with the energy needed for everyone to realize their individual potential.”
Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, starts the evening of Sept. 4 and ends at nightfall on Sept. 6.
It is a simple and meaningful tradition to dip an apple in honey, for a sweet new year. Keeping in tradition, Rabbi Yehuda will blow the shofar (ram’s horn) to symbolize a trumpet blast to accept G-d as king. All services will be held in the Gazebo at Ainaola Park at 200 Ainaola Drive.
Yom Kippur starts the evening of Sept. 13, and ends at nightfall on Sept. 14. On Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year, also known as the Day of Atonement, Chabad members refrain from food and drink, bathing, creams, the use of leather shoes and marital intimacy.
All of these traditions and laws are important in their own right but also contain within each, deeper significance and esoteric interpretation. The High Holiday prayers written by sages centuries ago are relevant today as we beseech the Almighty to grant a healthy sweet new year with joy success and peace.
Yom Kippur services will be held at Uncle Billy’s hotel conference room. Chabad welcomes every Jew, no matter their affiliation or level of observance.
Join Chabad for all of services and traditional meals. For more information, please email JewishHilo@gmail.com.