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Why does it cost so much for "tickets"? Is that the spirit of the day?

by Rabbi Baruch Emanuel Erdstein


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On Rosh Hashanah, the whole world is judged. It doesn't matter who has tickets (or the money to pay for them) or not. Because G-d values so much Jewish unity and communal harmony, we please Him greatly when we perform our divine service together.

It is partly because of this that the Sages instituted the Mitzvah of praying in a Minyan, citing the principle that the Divine Presence rests upon an assembly of ten people. On Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Judgment, it is particularly important to be with community, for, in the merit of our love for one another and our ability to work and worship together, we are judged favorably in G-d's eyes.

Some congregations rely on the revenues generated by ticket sales for High Holiday services to fund their institutions and their various activities for the entire year. Unfortunately, in some communities, ticket sales have created an air of exclusivity surrounding these holy times.

This is contrary to the spirit of the holidays, in which unity and selflessness should be the dominant tendencies. Other congregations -- including most Chabad synagogues -- find alternative means to finance themselves and have an “open-door” policy for the holidays (sometimes it gets a bit crowded!).

In addition, one may find that a genuine request to a local rabbi or community leader may result in the waiving of existing ticket fees. For Rosh Hashanah prayers, the bigger and more all-inclusive observant community we can find, the better. May the Creator bless all of the Jewish Nation and the world at large with a bountiful, righteous, and peaceful new year.


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Posted by: David on Aug 10, 2005

Most syrian orthodox shuuls request a donation however if you talk to the rabbi normally they will give a lesser fee. In my opinion if you truely believe in Hashem you will not mind even giving a small donation. It really will help the shuul for the year. I along time ago had a problem giving a donation as it seems hard, but figure it this way, if you go out to eat it could cost you $100, so if you gave $100 once a year(and this donation normally covers rosh hashanah and yom kippur). Its money well spent. It also will look good in your childrens eyes to see that your not only using your money for selfish things for yourself, but to actually help. No matter how much you give its still a mitzvah, even a penny!

P.S.- Even if you don't give a cent and just show up to shuul you will never be denied entrance that is NOT the way of the Jews. You just might have to find a non designated seat.


Mitzvot » Prayer » Synagogue
Holidays » Yom Kippur » The Prayers
Holidays » Rosh Hashanah » The Prayers

(pl. Mitzvot). A commandment from G-d. Mitzvah also means a connection, for a Jew connects with G–d through fulfilling His commandments.
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.
A quorum consisting of ten adult male Jews. A minyan is necessary to recite the kaddish or to publicly read from the Torah scroll.
It is forbidden to erase or deface the name of G-d. It is therefore customary to insert a dash in middle of G-d's name, allowing us to erase or discard the paper it is written on if necessary.