Thoughts rest with migrants this Rosh Hashanah says Newbury Park Rabbi
PUBLISHED: 12:00 13 September 2015
Jews will be thinking about their migrant ancestry and the plight of refugees across Europe as a new year rolls in, according one Rabbi.
Rabbi David Hulbert, of Bet Tikvah Synagogue, Perrymans Farm Road, Newbury Park, said Rosh Hashanah – the Jewish New Year – is about celebration but also about reflection.
The festival which is observed between today at sundown and Tuesday commemorates the creation of the world.
Jews believe it’s also when God puts a person’s good deeds up against their bad deeds and decides what the next year will be like for them.
Rabbi Hulbert called on the community to be charitable to those fleeing war-torn lands.
“It’s something that a lot of people will be thinking about this year,” he said.
“Because Jewish people are descendants of immigrants – Abraham was a migrant.”
He added: “We should be grateful for the good things that we have and we should share them with those less fortunate.”
The Rabbi said that the “joyful” time of year was also about repentance and charity.
“There are a lot of prayers made – whether they’re answered or not depends on how generous we are to charity, how individuals act and what their behaviour is like and we resolve to be better in the coming year.”
As well as eating apples and honey – a tradition during the new year – Rabbi Hulbert will be joined by worshippers tomorrow to float bread in a river – a Jewish tradition called Tashlich.
“It’s another nice custom. In the afternoon we go to a local river – we go to the Roding – and we float bread in the water – it symbolises ridding yourself of your sins.”
Those taking part are due to recite prayers by the river in Ray Park, Snakes Lane East, Woodford Green.
Rabbi Hulbert said: “Tashlich, which means chucking away or casting your sins away, is a very pleasant custom.”
He added: “I wish you all the best in the new year.”
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