The religious observances of Judaism rely on the lunar calendar and the monthly arrival of a new moon is an occasion for special prayers and celebration. Rosh Chodesh, Hebrew for “head of the month”, is the monthly holiday that celebrates the arrival of the new moon, marking the start of a new month on the Jewish calendar.
Rosh Chodesh Elul holds a very special place on the Jewish calendar, as the month prior to Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippor is a special time of introspection and personal stock-taking, a month to spiritually prepare for the holiday season with reflection and repentance.
During the month of Elul, the Shofar is blown every weekday after morning services. It is customary to daily recite Psalm 27, which speaks of the assurance of God’s protection and includes a plea that God not forsake his people. However, one of my personal favorite things about Elul is the four Hebrew letters of the month’s name are an acronym from the verse in Song of Songs: Ani L’dodi V’dodi Li; I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine. Elul is a time of recommitting to our relationship with G-d.
As the secular calendar turns from August to September and the Hebrew calendar turns from Av to Elul, the Florida Region of FJMC wishes you a meaningful Rosh Chodesh and an Elul filled with love.
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