Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Have An Easy Fast On This Yom Kippur!

Tonight [Tuesday Oct. 11, 2016] at sundown begins the Jewish Holiday Yom Kippur.  This is the Highest Holy Day on the Jewish calendar.  It marks the culmination of  the ten "Days of Awe" from Rosh Hashanah [the Jewish New year] to Yom Kippur [the Day of Atonement].

The 10 Days of Awe [days of repentance] are considered the High Holy Days for the Jewish people. This is a time for serious introspection, a time to consider the sins of the previous year and repent before Yom Kippur.

Yom Kippur  is a day of reconciliation, when Jews strive to make amends with people and to draw closer to God through prayer and fasting.  According to Jewish tradition, it is also the day when God decides the fate of each human being. 

The evening service [on this Tuesday] of Yom Kippur is often referred to as the Kol Nidre service.  That is because in the Jewish tradition the beautiful, classical music composer Max Bruch's solemn Kol Nidre, a declaration of "all vows," is recited [sung] by the cantor before the Yom Kippur service begins.  The words of this melody ask God to forgive any vows people have made to God and not kept. 

The service on the day of Yom Kippur [Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2016] lasts from morning until nightfall. 

Shana Tovah said on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and throughout the ten Days of Awe means simply 'A Good Year' in Hebrew.  It is a wish for you to have a good new year.

On the 10th day just before Yom Kippur the phrase Gmar Chatima Tova is said which means "A good final sealing" or "May you be inscribed [in the book of life] for good". It is generally said to also mean "may you have a healthy, peaceful and fulfilling year". 

So, I wish everyone Shana Tovah, Gmar Chatima Tova!  

Johnny Mathis Sings The Kol Nidre:

Brinton Averil Smith - principal cellist of HSO
At the synagogue I attend, not only is the Kol Nidre beautifully performed before the service by the cantor accompanied by a string quartet, near the end of the service they have the cello version of Kol Nidre played by the great virtuoso principal cellist of the Houston Symphony Orchestra, Brinton Averil Smith.

 To hear how beautiful the cello sounds playing this here is a You Tube of the Kol Nidrei by Max Bruch for cello and piano.

Max Bruch:  Kol Nidrei - Cello and piano:

To all Jews I wish an easy fast on this Yom Kippur.   And I wish peace and blessings to all.


bradley said...

Mathis should have been a cantor---a beautiful rendition

Big Mike said...

I agree Brad... And done with so much feeling- not faked.

Anonymous said...


Big Mike said...

Thanks and to you anonymous. :-)

Stacie B said...

Beautiful! THanks for posting. Since I worked late tonight, and missed going to synagogue, this was my Kol Nidre for tonight. It made me at least feel like I heard this very important prayer that we all should hear or say every year.

Big Mike said...

Thanks Stacie!

stephenbeckman said...

Mike, Leslie really enjoyed praying with you last night. Kol Nidre was very special

Big Mike said...

Wow! Thanks Stephen and Leslie-that was so nice of you to say - and I felt the same way! God Bless!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this very special Kol Nidre message. Just came home from services and read this post and listened to the music. Beautiful!

I want to share this with my friend and her granddaughter. The granddaughter is writing a paper for her college religion class. They are Catholic. I suggested they visit a temple for the Kol Nidre Service.

Blessings to you and Sherilyn for a healthy and peaceful year!

Aunt Carla

Big Mike said...

Thanks Aunt Carla so much. Same to you and the whole Saint Louis family!! Love, Michael and Sheralyn.

belfeckmalfan said...

Wonderful to sit with you last night at Kol Nidre at Temple Emanu El last night. Very special!!

Big Mike said...

And it was a blessing to sit by you and Leslie big Stephen!