Last week, the Chronicle asked its readers in an electronic poll the following question: “How will you be attending or participating in High Holiday services this year?” Of the 287 people who responded, 54% said “in person”; 19% said “remote streaming”; 15% said “combination of in person and remote streaming”; and 12% said they would not be participating in or attending High Holiday services this year. Comments were submitted by 46 people. A few follow.
Overjoyed to be back together in person.
I belong to a Reform synagogue whose services I no longer find to be interesting or inspiring. I used to attend services regularly, but no longer do so. I dislike the heightened use of Hebrew and the prevalence of modern music rather than beloved hymns that have long been a part of our cherished history.
Can you assure me that there is no resurgence of COVID? Can you guarantee me that my rabbi’s sermon won’t be its usual sleep-inducing diatribe? Can you move the Steelers–Raiders football game from Kol Nidre?
Since I’m unaffiliated, streaming is the best I can do. Not sure if it will be a local congregation or a congregation out of New York.
Apparently people are losing ties and forgetting about the benefits of congregational participation. Not only does it help to connect to our spiritual selves, but ties into our communal relationships and our historical connection to our people.
I can’t meaningfully pray on Yom Kippur in my living room. If I can’t be with people in my own synagogue, I’ll find another instead.
I will not be there because I have no family to go with. Also, I’m concerned about being exposed to COVID.
Definitely streaming this year! As COVID cases are rising I am grateful for the opportunity to Zoom and stay healthy!
At 74, I have no interest in the holidays. No Interest in sermons by self-absorbed rabbis. No interest in putting on a suit for three hours and thinking any of it makes the slightest difference.
In my experience, there is no substitute for the impact of a congregation of Jews together with the collective intention of praying for the good of all Jewish people everywhere and our whole world!
We are so unhappy with the Pittsburgh Jewish community. It has become too liberal for us and we are not interested in hearing another liberal sermon.
Because I have no family or close Jewish friends in the area, I find celebrating and attending services depressing
I greatly enjoy the sense of community I feel when I attend service in person, especially on Rosh Hashanah.
The experience of being in a synagogue, surrounded by other Jews, is far more powerful and meaningful than any other option. PJC