This page offers complete information on High Holy Day celebrations at Beit Sasson. Scroll down for a schedule of services as well as information on reserving seats and renewing annual membership with Beit Sasson.
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Dear Members of Beit Sasson,
The High Holy Days are knocking on our door and it is up to us to open our hearts and minds towards the upcoming experiences of the New Year. The High Holy Days (as their name refers to) provide us with the opportunity to reach higher levels through the abilities and gifts God has given us. We are thrilled as a community and as a nation to be part of these exciting events, knowing that the Creator had total trust in us that we will use these moments to live to the fullest. This is the reason why He made for us the High Holy Days.
Rabbi Yehudah HaNasi maintains, in Yoma 85b, that atonement is granted on Yom Kippur whether or not a sinner repents, because "the essence of the day atones” (itzumo shel yom mechaper). The opinion of Rabbi Yehudah emphasizes the notion that it is not up to us to worry about forgiveness, as forgiveness will be granted just by the nature of the Yom Kippur day. Our role during these times is to appreciate and be thrilled with the opportunity to be present in the special moments of the High Holy Days.
As a community, we are confident in God’s endless forgiveness and we are aware of the importance to build the same type of Godly forgiveness towards others and towards ourselves. There is no reason to latch onto our own personal guilts and grudges. We, as humans, can be flexible and open to change. What matters during these pivotal days of the year is our awareness of the power of mutual forgiveness and our belief in self-improvement.
Especially this year, when we are surrounded by unpredictable shifts in our routine life and by events and emotions that require our response, we need to remember that we do not have control over most of the reality around us. We do however have control over how we react to this reality. We should take this opportunity to learn how to be humble and flexible with our expectations of reality and our expectation of others around us. As people of faith and Torah, we believe that no individual or event can persuade us from our peace of mind and happiness. This is the freedom that the human being is blessed with. We can choose to view the moments of our lives as a series of hurdles and barriers, or we can view each moment as a doorway to the beyond.
In the last few years, our community has/is practicing a very high level of “Mitzvaat bein adam lachavero” (Interpersonal Commandments). Every day we prove that we can live in total peace with each other, that we can support and love each other. We prove that we are indeed getting better each year and that we are able to maximize our spiritual journey together.
With the help of God may we continue this communal self-awareness. May we continue our balanced, composed outlook on the changing world around us. Let us put aside the worries associated with judgment and the unknown future, of which we have no control. Let us perfect our peace of mind, which will allow us to leap with new energy towards the upcoming year. Finally, let us be grateful for God, for our community, and for our ability to relate to this world through faith.
תחל שנה וברכותיה
May a year and its blessings begin,
Rabbi Avinoam Durani
Rosh Hashanah is upon us and it is my pleasure to be addressing you as the President of Beit Sasson. In light of High Holy Days, I would like to take the opportunity to reflect upon Beit Sasson’s achievements/challenges in the past year, explore changes to pave a road to a better future, and look ahead to the coming year with prayers for good health, happiness and fulfillment for ourselves, our families, and our community.
Improvements at Beit Sasson in the past year: There were many plans in the pipeline. Security was in the forefronts, so we forged relationship with one of the best security firms. Additionally, our kitchen design committee developed a new kitchen design. Things moved along nicely and our membership grew at a healthy rate. Then KOVID19 placed a sudden halt on all that was going on. Although we had to stop, I would like to ensure everyone that all funds that were raised for each task is safeguarded by our executive committee, and every penny spent is heavily scrutinized.
Adding Personal Touch: You have witnessed my advocacy for open management style. In my opinion the best way to run our beloved shul is to bring all plans and issues to public attention and request everyone’s participation and personal touch to bring our goals to reality. For the past four years this has worked beautifully and B"H" we will continue with the same format in the coming year.
Looking Ahead: COVID19 has placed us facing many unfamiliar challenges. Safety takes top priority. So, we decided to conduct all services outdoors. Yet the challenge of protection against the whims of the weather especially for the upcoming high holidays remained. A swift response from our generous community allowed for locating and purchasing the best suited tent for our back yard. B”H” we were able to reduce the price tag from an initial quote of $30,000, to $20,000. Hashem willing, we will able to use this tent to conduct our services, as well as celebrating many happy occasions to come. There is no time to rest however. There are many issues lying ahead requiring everyone's participation to resolve. At the top of the list is how to Recognize and Meet Our Fiscal Challenges.
Challenges: Beit Sasson has transitioned from hardly a minyan in the basement of another building to a well-established thriving community in just a few years. Last year Beit Sasson housed approximately 200 people for each of the Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur services. Yet, membership dues alone was not enough to sustain our synagogue. This year, due to the pandemic, we are forced to conduct services at a considerable reduced head count. For that reason, I would like to urge everyone to continue their financial support. Buy the holiday seats, although you may not be able to attend the services. Renew your membership, bid high on the mitzvot to show your support, because sustaining Beit Sasson is the only way we can be “The Sephardic Congregation of Newton.”
With help of Hashem this pandemic will be over, and we can soon resume normal operations. In the meantime, you will hear a lot from me requesting help on how to overcome each obstacle we face.
I am always anxious to hear your suggestions and ways you can help improve Beit Sasson. Please contact me at JosephYashar@yahoo.com suggesting how you can get involved and help in whichever way possible.
5781 High Holy Day Services: On behalf of Beit Sasson executive committee, it is my pleasure to invite you and your family to join us for the High Holy Day Services. Rosh Hashanah begins on Friday evening September 18. Yom Kippur begins on Sunday evening September 20th. The complete High Holy Day schedule is enclosed.
Due to the pandemic, we are forced to limit the headcount to worship at Beit Sasson. However, we highly encourage people to become members, and to buy seats for the High Holy Days just to support our beloved shul. B”H” the pandemic will be over soon and we are to ensure we have a place to go back to. Please see www.sephardic-newton.org to conveniently purchase seats, and to make payments/donations.
I pray that Beit Sasson continues to take a more positive meaning in our lives.
I wish you and your family a sincere and heartfelt Shana Tova.
We have kept our dues low to encourage 100% participation. We would appreciate any help with operation expenses (including the recently hired Rabbi), monthly obligations (utilities, maintenance, Children’s Programs, etc...), and the recent Synagogue Expansion (Handicap ramp, etc...). Thank you.
High Holiday Seat Reservations for Members are:
High Holiday Seat Reservations for Non-Members are: