High Holy Days 5781 / 2020

Cantor David Reinwald and Rabbi Emeritus Shelton Donnell Will Lead Streaming Service

Rosh Hashanah 2020 will begin in the evening of Friday, September 18 and ends in the evening of Sunday, September 20.
Yom Kippur 2020 will begin in the evening of Sunday, September 27 and ends in the evening of Monday, September 28.
Sukkot 2020 will begin in the evening of Friday, October 2 and ends in the evening of Friday, October 9.
Simchat Torah 2020 will begin in the evening of Saturday, October 10 and ends in the evening of Sunday, October 11.

The High Holy Days are a time of year when the Jewish people as a whole are asked to engage in a process of doing a moral self-assessment; seeking forgiveness from others for harms we’ve done; making amends as appropriate; and resolving to do better in the future. Another important theme of these holidays is the celebration of the Jewish New Year. Rosh Hashanah, the first of the High Holy Days, marks the beginning of a new Jewish calendar year.


We have adopted Hinenu, “We are here,” as our theme and guide, as we plan for the approaching High Holy Days and the year ahead. Hinenu is the plural form of Hineni, “I am here,” words that are spoken when God commands Abraham to sacrifice his only son Yitzhak, and words that we read throughout our Jewish text. “We are here” is an opportunity for us to call upon ourselves to look deep within, reflect on what is truly important and meaningful to us, our families, our friends and our community; to take stock and commit ourselves to repair what is flawed, enhance what is righteous, and create new opportunities for goodness. This is a time of repentance, forgiveness, atonement, renewal and a wonderful opportunity for growth through enrichment.

Temple Beth Sholom has been vigilant about upholding Judaism’s highest priorities for life and health during COVID-19. Worship, education and community have been accomplished via Zoom, streaming video and other online resources. You have warmly embraced them and encouraged us not to rush to open our Temple before we can all enter safely and responsibly.

Because the first wave of the pandemic has not yet ended, it would not be safe to responsibly welcome back hundreds of people for large gatherings of any kind.

Therefore, the Worship Committee and Board of Directors, in direct consultation with the Cantor and Executive Director, have reached the very difficult but unanimous decision to lead our congregants for High Holy Day services on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur via streaming video, as we’ve been utilizing for some time now.

Cantor David Reinwald will conduct the streaming service from our sanctuary and we are most pleased to announce that our own Rabbi Emeritus Shelton Donnell will join us with sermons and readings from Portland, Oregon’s historic Congregation Beth Israel.

The Clergy, staff, educators, and the Worship Committee are using the summer months to prepare a meaningful and memorable High Holy Days experience for all our congregants. We will provide easy-to-use information and guides well in advance so that your sanctuary at home will be your sacred space for you and your family, including young children and teens.

We will update this page with more High Holy Day information and look forward to celebrating the holidays as we go from strength to strength and together we say, “Hinenu

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