Tag: New Years

What Does a Jew Pray on the Secular New Year?

A Jew, living in America, with eyes on two calendars – one Jewish, one secular – marks nonetheless the turning of the secular New Year.  With hope for continued freedom and the blessing of a better tomorrow, we might take a moment during our day to say:

Eternal God, we give thanks
For the gifts of life, wonder beyond words;
For the awareness of soul, our light within;
For the world around us, so filled with beauty;
For the richness of the earth, which day by day sustains us;
For all these and more we offer thanks.
Baruch Atah Adonai, hatov shimcha ul’cha na-eh l’hodot.
Blessed are You, Eternal, Your Name is goodness,
and to You we offer thanksgiving.
(by Rabbi Judith Z. Abrams)

Or we might recite:

For the good in us, which calls us to a better life,
  We give thanks.
For the strength to improve the world with our hearts and our hand,
  We offer praise.
For the desire in us which leads us to work for peace,
  We are grateful.
For life and nature, harmony and beauty, for the hope of tomorrow,
  All praise to the Source of Being.
(Adapted from Chaim Stern and Abraham Rothberg, Gates of Prayer, 1975 p. 271)

Happy New Year All!

2010 – New Year, Time to Count Blessings

As 2010 is underway, we have a 5 hour drive remaining from Palo Alto to home, so we tale this time to enumerate the blessings and joys of 2009:We Still have 4 grandparents who have very close relationships with our kids.
We still in love and enjoy being married to each other.
We still have 3 wonderful hildren who are growing and maturing in positive ways and who still love being Jewish.
We all have our health.
We both work in vibrant Jewish communities that we are proud to be part of and to be representing.
We have long friendships spanning two to four decades with people whom we don’t always see regularly but when we do they energize and sustain us.
We have made new close friendships in the past decade.
Our home is comfortable, dry and filled with our kids and their friends who like to sleep over.
We had an opportunity to travel extensively through the country – 20 states in 31 days in one minivan. We were hosted by good friends. We saw beautiful and intersting parts of our nation which inspired us.
Our baby became a Bar Mitzvah, making us very proud and bringing so many family and friends together
Our eldest applied to colleges and while we await answers, she made us proud by her perseverence and improved essay writing.
Our middle one became president of the temple youth group, evidenced significant leadership and growth.We look forward to the start of a secular new year and a new decade.
May this one bring more truth, promise and honesty than the last.What are the blessings you count from 2009?