By Shirley Siegel
We were 20 strong as we celebrated the first day of Rosh Hashanah in the Grand Hotel in Yarmouth on September 10. Our group can only be described as very diverse, old and young, representing several Canadian provinces and several American states, some with quite extensive backgrounds in Hebrew and Jewish traditions, others with very limited knowledge. What we shared was a sense of community, a real joy in being together to wish for each other a sweet, happy and healthy year ahead.
Thanks to the very kind efforts of Darrel Pink (he usually attends in person but was unable to this year), we had a wonderfully written guide to follow for our service as well as two shofars and a tallit. Led by Victor Indig of Yarmouth, together, we read poems, prayers and sang blessings in Hebrew and in English. In spite of our best efforts to blow the shofar ourselves, Sean Kehoe, Minister of the Yarmouth North Baptist Church provided some much appreciated musical prowess. His notes rang out in the room loud and clear – you could hear a pin drop – we all revelled in his ability to play the shofar so skillfully after only a few minutes of practice.
Some of us who participated are summer residents, only here in the area for a few months (come from aways) while others have lived in Yarmouth all or most of their lives. That did not seem to matter at all. We were all welcome. We were all part of the circle of Jewish life in the Diaspora. We were all neighbors and friends. It was truly a lovely, heartwarming experience to be part of this event. May we all be able to share this special time together in the years to come.