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Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, are also known as the High Holy Days or the Days of Awe. These holidays usually fall in September or October and are often characterized by long synagogue services and a focus on repentance.

The Jewish High Holidays are not always the most popular holidays in interfaith family families. How do you and your partner negotiate Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the most synagogue-centric holidays on the Jewish calendar? Read's articles, resources and links for ways to make the High Holidays more inclusive.

Upcoming Dates

  • Rosh Hashanah starts the evening of October 2, 2016; September 20, 2017; September 9, 2018.
  • Yom Kippur starts the evening of October 11, 2016; September 29, 2017; September 18, 2018.

High Holy Days: the Basics

Explaining the customs, rituals and language of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur in an introductory resource for all families.
Our Guide to the High Holidays for Interfaith Families is a comprehensive introduction to the Days of Awe. 
Guide cover
From background information to foods to suggestions to help you prepare, this guide has it all.

Celebrating the High Holy Days with Kids

Suggestions for sharing the holidays with kids of all ages, from recipes and crafts to getting through services.

Quick, easy downloads to guide you through the at-home rituals for the holidays, complete with audio of each blessing.

 Quick Reference
 In Your Community

 Further reading
 Keep Talking

Looking to share Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur ideas and stories with others?

 Additional Resources


Hebrew for "Head of the Year," the Jewish New Year. With Yom Kippur, known as the High Holy Days. Hebrew for "Day of Atonement," the final of ten Days of Awe that begin with Rosh Hashanah. Occurs during the fall and is marked by a 24-hour fast. One of the most important Jewish holidays. Derived from the Greek word for "assembly," a Jewish house of prayer. Synagogue refers to both the room where prayer services are held and the building where it occurs. In Yiddish, "shul." Reform synagogues are often called "temple."
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