Sunday, March 29, 2015 Nisan 9, 5775

A little girl in Israel awaits the building of her family's sukkah -- in this case, an elaborate affair that will require much wood and manual construction. Once up, the sukkah will serve as a place to dine and sleep; coupled with the lulav and etrog, it comprises what's needed to celebrate the Festival of Booths, which begins the evening...
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Sandra Berman (left) and Fran Beresid-Andrepont are members of Temple Beth Israel in Gadsden, Ala., which has a small congregation and a rabbi who flies in from Atlanta once a month to lead services. Congregants hope to fill the pews with unaffiliated Jews during Yom Kippur and the holidays that follow it. RNS Photo/Reuters
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Yom Kippur, Leviticus 16:1-34, Numbers 29:7-11
Even more than the yearning voice of the cantor during the High Holidays, I remember the palpable weeping of the worshippers, especially that of my grandmother and her contemporaries in the women's gallery of my childhood synagogue in Brooklyn, reaching a crescendo when the congregants would cry out, "Do not cast us into old age." To this day, I cannot...
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A handful of Hebrew books sat haphazardly on the mostly empty shelves. No family photos adorned the walls or rested on the desk in Rabbi Avraham Shmidman's new office in Lower Merion Synagogue. He's got plenty of each to choose from; there just hasn't been much time for office decorating. On Aug. 6, Shmidman and his family moved to the...
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