Message for the Month of Elul

Dear Alums,


             The Biblical month of Elul (the sixth month preceding Tishri, the seventh month) is about to begin. Tishri, the seventh month, is the month of the High Holy Days in Judaism.  This is a very special time, a time when we can enter into the biblical world with our Jewish brothers and sisters, in a very special way.


Rosh HaShana (New Year) is celebrated on the first day of the month of Tishri (21 September. 2017):  “Speak to the people of Israel, saying: ‘in the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of complete rest, a holy convocation commemorated with trumpet blasts' (Lev. 23.24).


Yom Kippur: the tenth day of Tishri (30 September, 2017) "Now, the tenth day of this seventh month is the day of atonement; it shall be a holy convocation for you: you shall deny yourselves and present the LORD’s offering by fire; and you shall do no work during that entire day; for it is a day of atonement, to make atonement on your behalf before the Lord your God. (Lev. 23.27-28).


Sukkot (7 days): (5 October, 2017): “Speak to the people of Israel, saying: ‘on the fifteenth day of this seventh month, and lasting seven days, there shall be the festival of booths to the Lord’” (Lev. 23.34).


Sukkot VII & Shmini Atzeret: (12 October, 2017): Seven days you shall present the LORD’s offerings by fire; on the eighth day you shall observe a holy convocation and present the LORD’s offerings by fire; it is a solemn assembly; you shall not work at your occupations (Lev. 23.36).


              OF SPECIAL NOTE:  The month of Elul begins on Tuesday of this week, 22 August, 2017, a month in preparation for the High Holy Days.  The name Elul in Hebrew is an acrostic for the first four words of the Song of Songs, 6.3:  “I am my Beloved’s and my Beloved is mine”.   Every day during this month the shofar is blown and Psalm 27 is recited every day until the end of Sukkot (12 October).   


My reason for writing to you today is in the hope that we will all consider  reciting Psalm 27 every day during the month of Elul until the last day of Sukkot (12 October).  I am also sending you an article I wrote on Psalm 27 (Rejoice and Be Glad, Saint Mary’s Press, 1995) which has a commentary and reflections for the month.  



In order to get Maureena's commentary on Psalm 27, please click here. 

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