A window into Judaism’s sacred days—throughout history and today.
Written especially for Christians.
Holy days and holidays provide the peak experiences of Jewish life. These moments speak deeply to the Jewish soul and animate Judaism’s culture. They encourage Jews to participate in their shared historical experience, which reflects their covenantal relationship with God, and articulate Jewish values that have allowed for the survival of the Jewish people. But what can they mean to Christians seeking to understand their own faith?
In this special book, Rabbis Olitzky and Judson guide you through the major Jewish holidays and what they mean for the Jewish people. Each chapter explores a different holiday and explains the origin, historical background, customs and rituals that are part of observance and the holiday’s Christian parallels. Examining observance in both home and synagogue—and in all Jewish denominations—this easy-to-use guide to the Jewish holidays will be a valuable resource for your own understanding of Jewish sacred time throughout the year. And by linking the Jewish holidays to familiar Christian holidays and practices, you will be better able to appreciate the roots of Christianity and how the fundamentals of Judaism relate to and reflect your own spiritual foundation.
- Rosh Hashanah–New Year
- Yom Kippur–Day of Atonement
- Sukkot–Feast of Booths (Fall Harvest Festival)
- Simchat Torah–Rejoicing in the Torah
- Purim–(Festival of Survival)
- Shavuot–(Receiving the Torah)
- Tisha B’Av (Mourning and Commemoration) and Other Special Days
- Shabbat (Day of Rest)
About the Author
Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky, named one of the fifty leading rabbis in North America by Newsweek, is well known for his inspiring books that bring the Jewish wisdom tradition into everyday life. He is executive director of the Jewish Outreach Institute, and is author of many books on Jewish spirituality, healing and Jewish religious practice, including Making a Successful Jewish Interfaith Marriage: The Jewish Outreach Institute Guide to Opportunities, Challenges and Resources; Introducing My Faith and My Community: The Jewish Outreach Institute Guide; Jewish Paths toward Healing and Wholeness: A Personal Guide to Dealing with Suffering; Grief in Our Seasons: A Mourner's Kaddish Companion; Twelve Jewish Steps to Recovery: A Personal Guide to Turning from Alcoholism&Other Addictions—Drugs, Food, Gambling, Sex...; Facing Cancer as a Family; Life's Daily Blessings: Inspiring Reflections on Gratitude for Every Day, Based on Jewish Wisdom; 100 Blessings Every Day: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Affirmations, Exercises for Personal Growth and Renewal Reflecting Seasons of the Jewish Year; and Recovery from Codependance: A Jewish Twelve Step Guide to Healing Your Soul. He is also co-author of Grandparenting Interfaith Grandchildren; Jewish Holidays: A Brief Introduction for Christians; Jewish Ritual: A Brief Introduction for Christians; Renewed Each Day, Vol. One—Genesis and Exodus: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Meditations; Renewed Each Day, Vol. Two—Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Meditations Based on the Bible and co-editor of The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal(all Jewish Lights).
Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky is available to speak on the following topics:
- The Jewish Twelve Step Path to Healing and Recovery
- Sparks Beneath the Surface: A Spiritual Read on the Torah
- Welcoming the Stranger in Our Midst
- How to Nurture Jewish Grandchildren Being Raised in an Interfaith Family
- Optimism for a Jewish Future
Rabbi Daniel Judson, spiritual leader of Temple Beth David of the South Shore in Canton, Massachusetts, is coeditor of The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal and coauthor of The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body and Mind during Pregnancy, Birth and the First Three Months (both Jewish Lights). He is a frequent guest speaker at both Jewish and Christian congregations.
Table of Contents
1 Rosh Hashanah: Embracing the New Year with Awe and Self-Reflection
2 Yom Kippur: Atoning for Sins and Renewing Life
3 Sukkot: Building Huts and Enjoying the Harvest
4 Simchat Torah: Rejoicing in the Torah
5 Hanukkah: Lighting Candles in the Darkness
6 Purim: Merry-making for a Story of Redemption
7 Pesach/Passover: Celebrating the Journey from Slavery to Freedom
8 Shavuot: Remembering the Giving of the Torah
9 Tisha B'Av and Other Special Days
10 Shabbat: Observing the Sabbath
A Final Note to the Reader
Jewish Holidays throughout the Year
Calendar of Holidays
The Four Major Movements in American Judaism
Suggestions for Further Reading
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A wonderful, easy-to-read account of the Jewish High holidays and other observances. The attempt to draw comparisons between Christian and Jewish similarities is interesting, and will hopefully bring the novice Christian scholar to delve more into his/her Hebraic/Biblically Scriptural roots.