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Holy Days & Festivals

As the prophets declared long ago, ritual and ceremony are not of the essence of religion. However, they are a means of making religious truth more vivid and inspiring to the worshipper. Following are brief descriptions of the major Jewish holidays celebrated at Emanu-El, their significance and some associated practices.


May 30 - 31, 2017 [5777]

While having its roots as an agricultural holiday and being the second of the “pilgrimage festivals,” Shavuot in a modern context is most significant for being the “Festival for Giving the Torah.” Read More »

Upcoming Jewish Holidays


Selichot   September 24, 2016
Rosh Hashanah   October 2 - 4, 2016
Yom Kippur   October 11 - 12, 2016
Sukkot   October 16 - 23, 2016
Sh’mini Atzeret/Simchat Torah   October 23 - 24, 2016
Chanukah   December 24, 2016 - January 1, 2017
Purim   March 11 - 12, 2017
Passover   April 10 - 17, 2017
Yom HaShoah   April 23-24, 2017
Shavuot   May 30 - 31, 2017

Note: All Jewish holidays begin at sunset. Dates specified at this site are for those evenings, so the holiday extends from sunset on the noted date until dusk on the next.

Watch holiday services »

Services from the Fifth Avenue Sanctuary may be watched via live video stream.
Archived videos may be accessed by clicking the “stack menu” icon at the
top right of the viewer.

For information about
the High Holy Days, click here »

View our calendar of upcoming holidays »

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