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LGBT Rosh Hashanah

By Charlotte Robinson, September 25, 2014
This is the first full day of Rosh Hashanah the Jewish New Year that began at sundown last night. The year 5775 marks the celebration of the creation of the world & the human being. Rosh Hashanah begins a 10-day period of introspection & contemplation culminating in Yom Kippur the Day of Atonement. Rosh Hashanah is marked with a special rituals. Prior to the arrival of the day it is customary to send new years greetings to friends, to buy new clothing & to examine ones behavior. On Rosh Hashanah eve you eat apples dipped in honey signifying a sweet year. At Rosh Hashanah services the day is marked with a special liturgy in which we pray for the whole world. A highlight of the Rosh Hashanah service is the sounding of the Shofar a ram's horn which is meant to shock the listener into self-examination. Now there’s a LGBT inclusive prayer book for Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur. The contemporary text for Conservative congregations acknowledges LGBT relationships by making references to "partners", faltering faith, depression, loneliness & financial difficulties has been hailed as "an extraordinary event" by the Rabbinical Assembly the New York-based organization of Conservative rabbis that is behind its creation. Rabbi Jacob Luski of Congregation B'nai Israel states that the new prayer book brings a sensitivity to "issues of the 21st century" with its gender-neutral language & practical approach. "Yom Kippur is a fast day, yet some of us have medical issues. There is a prayer for those unable to fast. There is a prayer for caregivers. It's a sensitivity we've always had, but here there is a prayer just for that. There is a prayer for remembering a hurtful parent during the Yizkor, or memorial service, on Yom Kippur.” This is a great step forward in our quest for LGBT Equality. 
L'shanah tovah ("for a good year") to all Our LGBT Jewish Families!
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