A Special High Holiday Message from Rabbi Shaiman
No longer shall you need the sun for light by day,
Nor the shining of the moon for radiance by night;
For the LORD shall be your light everlasting,
Your God shall be your glory.
Your sun shall set no more,
Your moon no more withdraw;
For the LORD shall be a light to you forever,
And your days of mourning shall be ended.
- Isaiah 60:19-20
These words of the poet and prophet Isaiah were originally meant to offer consolation to our ancestors who were exiled to Babylon after the destruction of the Temple. However, they have comforted the Jewish people throughout the ages, as each and every year they are chanted in synagogues a few weeks before the start of the new year, reminding us that better, brighter days are ahead.
Rosh Hashanah is unique among the Jewish holidays in that we celebrate it during the new moon, when the night sky is at its darkest. This past year has been a very dark, difficult one for us all; yet as Isaiah reminds us — especially In these times, slivers of hope shine very bright among the darkness.
May the New Year 5781 shine an Or Hadesh… a New Light… upon us all.
L’shanah tovah U-metukah! A good sweet year!
Rabbi Joel Shaiman