Jews around the world will observe Yom Kippur today at sundown, representing the end of Rosh Hashanah.
The Jewish religious holiday continues through sundown Wednesday.
Yom Kippur, or or "Day of Atonement," marks the end of the 10 holy days, known as Yomin Nora-im, or "Days of Awe," which began on Sept. 17 with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.
Mark J. Miller
HIGH HOLY DAYS END — The Jewish High Holy days that began with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, ends at sundown today with Yom Kippur. Student Rabbi Carlie Weisbrod of Temple Beth Israel on Lovers Lane in Steubenville holds the Torah marking the end of the 10 days.
During the Yomin Nora-im, God opened the Book of Life containing all the deeds of mankind, according to Jewish liturgy. Each act and intention for each individual are contained in the book. The final fate of all mankind also is contained in the book, including who will ultimately live or die, perform or not perform good deeds and will succeed or fail.
Prayer, atonement and good works will avert the wrath of God and lead to forgiveness, according to Jewish teachings.
The service on Yom Kippur includes the reciting of the traditional prayer Kol Nidrei, or "All Vows." The Yizkor, also on Yom Kippur, is a memorial service where families recall loved ones and the memory of their love and teachings passed down through generations.
The Neilah is the final service on Yom Kippur. During the service, Jewish liturgy teaches the gates of heaven are preparing to close, and the last prayers to God for atonement are heard. The liturgy also teaches that those who are earnest in their atonement will be forgiven by God. The days include Jews participating in prayer, confession and introspection on how they have lived their lives during the previous year.
The shofar, or traditional ram's horn, is meant to symbolize the voice of God and was heard on each consecutive day of the 10-day period until sundown today, when it's sounded for the last time.
Kol Nidrei services will begin at 8 p.m. today at Temple Beth Israel on Lovers Lane in Steubenville. Morning services will begin at 10 a.m., the afternoon services at 4 p.m and evening services 6 p.m., all on Wednesday.
For information, call (740) 264-5514.