Selichot this year
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Selichot this year

Most years, many shuls have programs for the night of Selichot, which this year is this Saturday, September 12. They’re live; they’re late or at least late-ish at night; they’re community-based; they often are either emotionally intense or a great time to catch up with people you haven’t seen all summer.

This pandemic year, everything is different. Many shuls aren’t having Selichot programs; it’s hard enough to figure out how to have High Holy Day services that will meet people’s pent-up needs for community, meaning, and beauty. But the shuls that are offering those programs are doing them online, which means that geography is no problem. Distance does not matter. If something interests you, just click on it.

Here are three Selichot programs; one comes from Rockland County, one from Bergen, and one from Essex. All are open to everyone. Each one is about some aspect of identity and love — and hope. Each is a worthy portal into a new year.

—Joanne Palmer

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