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How can I find dates of upcoming Jewish holidays?

by Rabbi Mendy Hecht

  

Library » Miscellaneous » The Jewish Calendar | Subscribe | What is RSS?


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A. No two years are the same. Every year is different--according to the Julian calendar, that is. Because the Jewish holidays are governed by the Jewish calendar, and the Jewish calendar is a lunar calendar, the Jewish holidays fall on different days each year in the Julian calendar, which is a solar calendar.

B. For example, take Pesach, commonly known as Passover: according to the Jewish (lunar) calendar, Pesach begins on the 15th of the Jewish month of Nissan, a lunar-calendar month. But the 15th of Nissan may fall anywhere from the last third of March to mid-April, because those are solar-calendar months, and the two calendars just don’t line up.

C. Thousands of years ago, your question was just the question The Rabbis would seek an answer to, month after month. See, there was no fixed, printed calendar back then—The Rabbis would set the dates of the Jewish holidays by the monthly sighting of the new moon. Today, thankfully, we have a fixed lunar calendar that projects well into the future what our holiday dates will be. So, to find out when Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, or any holiday will be, just consult your local friendly Jewish calendar.

A Jewish calendar is nice to own, but even better to live by. A good calendar reminds us of days important to us... don't let the Jewish year pass you by!
Where do I find a Jewish calendar?

1. Online

Go to the AskMoses calendar!


For holiday dates for next few years visit the following pages:

Rosh Hashanah

Yom Kippur

Sukkot and Simchat Torah

Chanukah

Tu b'Shvat

Purim

Passover

Lag b'Omer

Shavuot

To find the date for a holiday in years past, or for years down the line, go to http://www.chabad.org/holidays. You'll also find there a ton of holiday information. Most of it is practical--and educational, too.

2. Offline

Your local friendly Chabad center will have one just for you, free of charge (most send one out each year, anyway). Many Jewish organizations dispatch Jewish calendars, replete with Jewish information, in their fundraising mass mailings. In addition, you may just find one at your local supermarket! Several chains produce Jewish calendars in an effort to woo the Kosher-consumer market, particularly around the Jewish New Year and Pesach time.

3. Into Your House

A Jewish calendar is nice to own, but even better to live by. A good calendar reminds us of days important to us, and is filled with scribblings of important events we can't afford to miss. And that's just the idea of the Jewish calendar--don't let the important dates in the Jewish year pass you by!


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Holidays » General Information » Holiday Information

Passover
A Biblically mandated early-spring festival celebrating the Jewish exodus from Egypt in the year 1312 BCE.
Rosh Hashanah
The Jewish New Year. An early autumn two day holiday marking the creation of Adam and Eve. On this day we hear the blasts of the ram's horn and accept G-d's sovereignty upon ourselves and the world. On Rosh Hashanah we pray that G-d should grant us all a sweet New Year.
Yom Kippur
Day of Atonement. This late-autumn high-holiday is the holiest day of the year. We devote this day to repentance and all healthy adults are required to fast.
Kosher
Literally means "fit." Commonly used to describe foods which are permitted by Jewish dietary laws, but is also used to describe religious articles (such as a Torah scroll or Sukkah) which meet the requirements of Jewish law.
Nissan
The first month of the Jewish calendar. This month, which falls out in early spring, is known for the holiday of Passover which starts on the 15th of Nissan.
Pesach
Passover. A Biblically mandated early-spring festival celebrating the Jewish exodus from Egypt in the year 1312 BCE.