High Holy Days 2019

Please note that only members and prospective members with a ticket/name badge and photo ID are permitted admittance to High Holy Day services, unless indicated below. If you’re interested in becoming a member or prospective member please reach out to our Membership Associate, Alicia Broudy (267-930-7286 / [email protected]). More information about getting tickets is available under the FAQ section.

High Holy Day Schedule

Selichot: Seven Days on 13 Thompson: A Mental Health Professional’s Inpatient Stay
Saturday, September 21 at 8:00pm

As we approach the Days of Awe, we invite you to join us as we turn inward in our relationships to ourselves and God, and outward to our relationships with each other. This reading, by Betsy Fiebach, MSW, LCSW (r), and moderated by Fran Martin, PhD, shares a path to healing and renewal. Through the personal story of Betsy Fiebach and the insight of Fran Martin, we will contemplate our own journeys and consider ways to destigmatize emotional struggles we experience including mental illness.

Erev Rosh Hashanah: Sunday, September 29
8:00pm: Service

Rosh Hashanah: Monday, September 30
8:30am: Contemporary Service
11:00am: Classical Service*
1:30pm: Tashlich Ceremony at Fairmount Water Works; Tashlich is a ceremony of casting away one’s sins or wrongdoings from the past year, and to improve and move forward in life. Please bring seeds, corn, or peas to throw into the water; bread is harmful to the ducks.
3:00pm: Family Service

Kol Nidre
Tuesday, October 8
6:00pm Contemporary Service in Sanctuary
8:15pm Classical Service in Sanctuary*

Yom Kippur
Wednesday, October 9
8:30am Contemporary Morning Service in Sanctuary
11:00am Classical Morning Service in Sanctuary
1:30pm Family Service in Sanctuary (open to members & prospective members)
1:30pm Study Session with Rabbi Freedman
1:30pm Meditation Study
3:00pm Afternoon Service in Sanctuary
4:00pm Yizkor/ Neilah (memorial/concluding) Service in Sanctuary
Break-the-Fast following Neilah (concluding) Service

*If you need a sign language interpreter, please contact Catherine Fischer ([email protected]).

Yom Kippur Information

Roll of Remembrance
The Rodeph Shalom Roll of Remembrance book honors the memory of our loved ones. To include and honor the memory of loved ones (who passed away in previous years) in the 2019/5780 Rodeph Shalom Roll of Remembrance, please click here to make a contribution. Already included in the Roll of Remembrance are those who passed away this year and those with a Perpetual Memorial. The submission deadline is Monday, September 16. Contributions and names received later will be acknowledged in the RS Bulletin.The Roll of Remembrance will be available at Yizkor/Neilah (Memorial/Concluding) Service on Wednesday, October 9 at 4:00pm. The names of all who passed away since last year's High Holy Days will be read at this service.

Food Drive on the Morning of Yom Kippur, October 9
Using the shopping bag distributed to you at the Contemporary and Classical Services on Rosh Hashanah morning, please bring non-perishable food items to Rodeph Shalom on Yom Kippur morning only. Your food donation supports PHILABUNDANCE. Thank you for continuing the tradition of tikkun olam at Rodeph Shalom.

Yom Kippur Meditation
Wednesday, October 9 at 1:30pm

The session will be led by Ben-Zion Friedman, who will discuss the science behind  the benefits of meditation. Ellen Poster will show how Jonah’s ordeal in the belly of the beast may be interpreted as a meditation on personal transformation, and Mel 'Moshe' Seligsohn will lead a guided practice. The curious and the experienced are welcome.

Yom Kippur Afternoon Study
Join Rabbi Eli Freedman on October 9 at 1:30pm

Wednesday, October 9, following Neilah (concluding) Service
Congregants are invited to gather in Teller Auditorium to Break-the-Fast. Thank you to the Jamison Fund for sponsoring the Break-the-Fast.



Types of Services:

  • Contemporary Services: Inspired by the world today, and led by clergy, instrumentalists, and Makheilah: The RS Choir, this multigenerational service encourages participation through its modern, accessible music.
  • Classical Services: Inspired by majestic music and the history of Rodeph Shalom, these services are led by our clergy, organist, and professional choir. Thank you to the Roberta Lee & D. Arthur Magaziner Music Memorial Fund for supporting our High Holy Day professional choir.
  • Services for Families with Children: Our 8:30am Contemporary Services, held on both Rosh Hashanah (Monday, September 30) and Yom Kippur (Wednesday, October 9), provide a comfortable setting for children of all ages. During the sermon, special activities tailored to tots (accompanied by a parent), as well as grade school children are available. The Afternoon Family Services for Rosh Hashanah at 3:00pm and Yom Kippur at 1:30pm are designed for non-readers through grade school age, and are open to members and non-members.

Ticket/Membership Information:

  • Membership Tickets/Name Badge & Guest Passes: High Holy Day Tickets/Name Badge will be mailed to members in good standing (see below). Guest passes will also be mailed.
  • Members in Good Standing: Congregants in good standing are those who have paid at least half of their membership commitment by the High Holy Days, and the other half by December 31, 2019, or have a payment plan in place. Requests for membership commitment help can be directed to Catherine Fischer at 267-930-7282 or [email protected].

High Holy Day Guest Pass Information:

  • Procedures for RS Congregants to Obtain Guest Passes: Requests for guest passes should be make in writing to the Congregation’s office and should include the name and address of your guests. A minimum contribution of $180 for each guest pass is requested. For security reasons, guest passes will not be issued at the door and must be obtained prior to the service.
  • For Out-of-Town Guests: Members may request guest passes for out-of-town guests. A contribution of $180 per guest pass for each out-of-town guest older than 26 is required.

  • Guest Pass Reciprocity: If you would like to bring guests for High Holy Day services who are members of another synagogue, please have them contact their home synagogue about providing reciprocity information. Reciprocity forms should be emailed to Dina Horowitz or faxed to 215-627-1313 attn: Dina Horowitz. Please advise your guests to bring photo identification.

  • For Local Residents: Local residents who are interested in attending services must contact Alicia Broudy at 267-930-7286 or [email protected].
    Full-time students with a valid student ID do not require guest passes. Dependent parents of a member who reside with the member may receive complimentary guest passes. Members of the military may be admitted without guest passes by presenting evidence of their status at the door. No contribution is requested. We invite prospective members to come as our guests for one High Holy Day season. Prospective members should contact Alicia Broudy at 267-930-7286 or [email protected] for information about our congregation.

  • Adult Children of Members in Good Standing:
    We welcome with open arms adult children of RS members and hope that they can join us for the High Holy Days. Below are guidelines:
    • Adult children 26 years old and under do not require a High Holy Day pass and can join their family with a photo ID.
    • Adult children 27 years old and up, living out-of-town who belong to a synagogue can receive passes through reciprocity. Contact Dina Horowitz
    • Adult children 27 years old and up, living out-of-town and currently unaffiliated are asked to make a contribution of their choosing to RS. We are happy to work out the arrangements directly with your  child. Contact Catherine Fischer for more information.
    • Adult children 27 years old and up living in the Philadelphia area are invited to consider joining RS as Young Friends.

What is new for 2019 / 5780?

  • Building entrance: Entry is only via the Green Street doors. The Broad Street doors and the Mt. Vernon Street doors are no longer used as entrances.
  • Screening and security: Member and visitor screening (inspection of bags and backpacks) remains in effect; the use of hand-held metal detectors (wands) is a new tool available to our security personnel.  Anticipate a queue at the Green Street door to allow for service attendee screening. Consider arriving 20 minutes early. The sanctuary doors are open in advance of services.
  • Overflow parking location: The Masterman School parking lot (enter at Brandywine St. between 16th & 17th) replaces the former Watts Street location. Consider using Uber, Lyft, taxis, or SEPTA.

Please note...

  • Hearing Devices: Assistive hearing devices are available. To reserve one, call the main office at 215-627-6747.
  • Caring Community ReSpectAbility in Services: Inclusion with our Rodeph Shalom family is integral to our mission of creating profound connections. To this end, please consider these actions:
      1)  Offer your aisle seat to congregants who require accommodation for wheelchairs, walkers, canes, or other needs.
      2)  Help clear the path for members who require accommodation during the post services “crush” at exits.
      3)  Give priority use of the restroom behind the security desk to those with mobility needs.

    The Caring Community group will distribute assistive audio devices, large print prayer books and answer questions regarding special requests for accommodation. If you have ideas on how we can become more inclusive, contact Stephanie Strauss.