Yom Kippur 2022: what you need to know

For those unfamiliar with Yom Kippur, here’s a breakdown of the most important holiday in the Jewish faith.

ST. LOUIS – Jews around the world will soon observe Yom Kippur, also known as the Day of Atonement.

It is considered the most important holiday in the Jewish faith, according to History.com. Yom Kippur falls in the month of Tishrithe seventh month of the Hebrew calendar.

Here’s everything you need to know about the holidays.

What is Yom Kippur?

Yom Kippur marks the end of the 10 days of admiration, a period of introspection and repentance that follows Rosh Hashanah. On this sacred day, God decides the fate of everyone, according to tradition. Jews are encouraged to make amends and ask forgiveness for the sins of the past year.

The holiday is observed with a 25-hour fast and a special religious service, according to History.com. Both Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah are known as the “high holy days” of Judaism.

According to tradition, “God judges all creatures during the 10 days of fear” and decides whether they will live or die in the coming year. God “writes the names of the righteous in the book of life” and “sentences the wicked to death on Rosh Hashanah.”

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Observing Yom Kippur

Jews who observe the holiday use it as a time to pray, do good deeds, look back on past mistakes, and make amends.

On Yom Kippur, work is prohibited. Jews will participate in church services, which will skyrocket synagogue attendance, History.com said.

According to the Torah, all Jewish adults must abstain from food and drink between sunset the evening before Yom Kippur and nightfall the following day. The sick, the elderly and women who have just given birth are exempt from fasting.

It is believed that fasting “cleanses the body and mind, not as a punishment”. Some religious Jews also abstain from bathing, washing, using cosmetics, wearing leather shoes and having sex, according to History.com.

Similar to Rosh Hashanah, rabbis and their congregations read a special prayer book called the machzor. The blowing of the shofar – a ram’s horn – is also performed on Yom Kippur. A long bell rings at the end of the final service to mark the end of the fast.

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When is Yom Kippur?

This year, Yom Kippur begins on the evening of Tuesday, October 4 and ends on the evening of Wednesday, October 5.

Customs of Yom Kippur

Pre-Yom Kippur holiday – Families and friends gather for a feast. The idea is to have enough strength to last for 25 hours.

Break the fast – After the final service, people go home for a meal. It usually consists of comfort foods like blintzes, noodle pudding, and baked goods.

Wear white – White is a symbol of purity, according to History.com. Some married men wear kittens – white shrouds – to signify repentance.

Charity – Some Jews donate or volunteer in the days leading up to Yom Kippur. “This is seen as a means of atoning and asking God’s forgiveness.”

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