YM&YWHA of Washington Heights & Inwood

Sukkot: the Holiday of Joy

As Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur come to a close, Jews around the world immediately start preparation for the holiday of Sukkot. On a chronological level, this is the time of year of harvesting crops, but Sukkot holds a much deeper significance. Deemed “The Time of Our Joy”, Sukkot holds a strong significance for both Jews and non-Jews alike. It is a time for communal celebration, giving thanks, and overall joy. Sukkot is one of the few times the Torah gives a specific commandment to be “joyful”.

What is unique about Sukkot is that this is a holiday where everyone is invited to join in the celebration. The idea is that all people have what to be thankful for, and this the time for everyone to cast away what seems to separate us and join in one community in giving thanks.

If you visit us at the Y during the holiday, you will notice that we have constructed a Sukkah on our roof. A sukkah is a temporary dwelling place consisting of 4 walls, and a roof made of natural materials. This Sukkah, or booth, acts as a reminder that sometimes we become too accustomed to the comfort of our own (sturdy) homes. It is important for all of us to take a moment to step back and appreciate everything that we have, and take joy in the fact that there are those people in our lives who make every day possible. This idea is extremely important today with all of the unrest and evil that pollutes our world. We hope you take some time to visit our Sukkah and meet new and old friends!

May we all appreciate what we have, and let this time of joy be the start of a great year for everyone!

About the Y
Established in 1917, the YM&YWHA of Washington Heights & Inwood (the Y) is Northern Manhattan’s premier Jewish community center — serving an ethnically and socio-economically diverse constituency — improving the quality of life for people of all ages through critical social services and innovative programs in health, wellness, education, and social justice, while promoting diversity and inclusion, and caring for those in need.

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