Yom Kippur Resources
A High Holiday Message
The Talmud tells us that God created repentance (teshuvah) before creating the physical world. As Billy Joel once sang, “we’re only human, we’re supposed to make mistakes.” It’s how we respond to mistakes, how we grow, that matters. This video explores the twin themes of teshuvah and gratitude (hakarat hatov.) Our tradition offers us practices that cultivate self-reflection and humility, relationship and repair. We hope these words offer some comfort and guidance as you undergo your own process of teshuvah and, in meaningful relationships with others, make Godliness present in the world.
Yom Kippur at Lincoln Memorial
Kavvanah written for Yom Kippur services at the Lincoln Memorial, 2015.
Addressing Race as a Jewish Community
As a time to take responsibility for communal wrongs, Yom Kippur calls us to learn about and grapple with issues of race in America.
Gates, Locked and Unlocked: A Yom Kippur Text Study
This text study examines the vivid image of gates closing at the end of Yom Kippur.
Can a Reconstructionist Sin?
Since Reconstructionist Judaism affirms a conception of God as a force, power or process — but not as a supernatural Being who can be addressed and can respond — what happens to the notion of sin? Rabbi Richard Hirsh argues that Reconstructionist theology makes it more, not less, important that we take on the responsibility for judgment, atonement, apology and repentance
How to Make Yom Kippur Meaningful for Our Children
Yom Kippur is probably the most challenging holiday to explain meaningfully on a child's level. Rabbi Devorah Bartnoff, z”l, offers goals and techniques for teaching and experiencing Yom Kippur.
Fall Holiday Glossary
This file contains a helpful glossary of terms for Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Shmini Atzeret and Simchat Torah. It begins with a letter to parents suggesting themes to think about during the holiday season.
High Holiday Liturgy
Rabbi Alan LaPayover (RRC ‘02), recorded the prayers of the Reconstructionist liturgy for the High Holiday services. The sound files are available for listening and download from links on this page.