The blog of the Roaring Fork Valley (Reform) Jewish community
77 Meadowood Drive • Aspen, CO • 81611
Rabbi David Segal and Cantor Rollin Simmons

Monday, September 27, 2010

Songs and Sermons from Yom Kippur

Moadim l'simcha - Happy Sukkot -- and Happy Simchat Torah to all!

It was an honor to lead this community in worship and learning during Yom Kippur.  We hope the new year 5771 brings many blessings for you and your families.  As we did after Rosh Hashanah, we are posting songs and sermons from Yom Kippur.  Please see the descriptions and links below.

We hope to see you again soon.

בברכה / with blessing,
Rabbi David Segal & Cantor Rollin Simmons

Adonai Mah Adam (click to download)
   from the Yizkor (Memorial) Service
   composed by Pedro d'Aquino

God, what is man that You should care about him, mortal man, that You should think of him? (Psalm 144:4)
Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow. (Psalm 144:4)
at daybreak it flourishes anew; by dusk it withers and dries up.  (Psalm 90:6)
You return man to dust; You decreed, “Return you mortals!” (Psalm 90:3)
Turn, O LORD! How long? Show mercy to Your servants.  (Psalm 90:13)
Give us joy for as long as You have afflicted us, for the years we have suffered misfortune  (Psalm 90:15)
Teach us to count our days rightly, that we may obtain a wise heart.  (Psalm 90:12)
But God will redeem my life from the clutches of Sheol, for God will take me. Selah. (Psalm 49:16)
My body and mind fail; but God is the stay of my mind, my portion forever.  (Psalm 73:26)

From Dust to Dust (click to download) 

   from the Yom Kippur Morning Service   
   Composed by Cantor Rollin Simmons; Arranged by David Deschamps
   Text from High Holiday Liturgy, adapted from Kol Haneshama and M'tsudah Siddur

We begin from dust
we find our end in dust
so long as we live, we strive for bread
We begin from dust

Like vessels of clay we break
Like grass we wither
Like flowers we fade
Like shadows we pass
Like clouds, we drift away
We blow by like the wind.

Like dust we scatter
Like a dream, we vanish from sight.
But you, oh you...
Your reign is eternal, O God who lives and endures. 
Your reign is eternal, O God who lives and endures.



a word from Rabbi Segal:  I preached about two hot-button issues this Yom Kippur: Israel; and the Muslim center near Ground Zero.  I hope that my words will be received in the spirit in which I delivered them: as an invitation to conversation, and to an exchange of ideas and sources.  I expect and welcome different points of view, so I hope to hear from you to continue both conversations.
Click the sermon titles to download the PDFs.

• "Sacred Grounding": thoughts on the Cordoba House and Jewish responses to Islam in America

• "A Tale of Two Emails": about how we talk about Israel within the Jewish community, and how it's hurting us
       *click here for the handout from the afternoon discussion session about Israel

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Rosh Hashanah Sermons and Song

Shanah tovah, everyone!  It was an honor for Rollin and me to lead the Aspen Jewish Congregation in prayer and reflection this Rosh Hashanah.  In some ways, this was our first major introduction to the community, and we have felt so embraced and welcomed.  We look forward to our worship together again on Yom Kippur.

Several of you asked us to post my sermons and Rollin's singing, so here they are (click the links to download the PDF and MP3 files):

  • Rosh Hashanah Evening Sermon: "The More Things Change..."

  • Rosh Hashanah Morning Sermon: "Offlining Toward Paradise"

  • Cantor Rollin singing Avinu Malkeinu

We hope your new year has started off with sweetness and blessing. May these Yamim Noraim / Days of Awe help you connect more deeply with your loved ones and with your best self.