A High Holiday Prayer to Help Abused Women Find Healing

By Danielle Cantor, JWI Design and Communications Manager

Photo by runneralan2004, via Flickr Creative Commons

You never know who is sitting next to you at synagogue, especially during Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services when attendance swells and the sanctuary is full. That’s what makes the High Holidays such a crucial time for congregations to raise awareness among members about issues – such as domestic violence – that impact the entire community. For the second year, JWI’s Clergy Task Force is encouraging rabbis nationwide to use its misheberach prayer in their High Holiday services, calling for the healing of families touched by domestic violence. The multi-denominational prayer is written in both English and Hebrew, and is particularly appropriate this year because the fall Holidays run into October, which is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

“When rabbis mention something in public, it signals that they are approachable and available to talk about the issue,” says Rabbi Richard Hirsh, executive director of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association and co-chair of the Task Force. “It may help someone who may be ambivalent to step forward.” Task Force co-chair Rabbi Marla Hornsten of Temple Israel in West Bloomfield, Mich., adds that “this prayer reminds us that we can’t simply sit by when people are not safe in their homes.”

One response to “A High Holiday Prayer to Help Abused Women Find Healing

  1. This is so very beautiful…..Thank G-d that,for the most part, it is no longer a “shonda” to even bring this subject up! How I wish that this awareness was expressed way before now….when I was just a young child…..This coming year I will do everything I can to raise awareness and be part of a solution to
    abuse on any level in our community…I think “honoring others” begins with
    honoring our own lives..So for this New Year, I wish all my JWI family the willingness and ability to heal from our own particular pain, and to transform that energy into doing good in the world. L’Shana Tovah

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