Welcome to High Holy Days 2015 / 5776

Begin Again.
explore. sing. pray.
connect. dance. focus.
be. listen. align.
repair. forgive. accept.

Kehilla members receive FREE admission to all services.|

Online ticket sales are now closed.  

Tickets are available for all services and can be purchased at the door. 

Kol Nidre at Scottish Rite Center: Tuesday, September 22, 6:30pm (Doors open 5:45pm)
Kol Nidre Family Service at Kehilla: Tuesday, September 22, 6:30pm (Doors open 6pm)
Yom Kippur Day at Scottish Rite Center: Wednesday, September 23, 9:30am (Doors open 8:15am)
Yom Kippur Afternoon/Evening at Kehilla: Wednesday, September 23, 4:30pm (Doors open 4pm)

Audio Streaming of Services is Available Here

Speak! The Power of Our Words

Death and life are in the power of the tongue.​​​​​​–Proverbs 18:21

“In the beginning…” the words of G-d create the world; so too, our use of words creates worlds–internally, in our relationships and in our communities. Loving words create worlds of joy and wholeness. Kind words create worlds of compassion. Angry words create worlds of defensiveness. Mean words create worlds of suffering and aggression. True words can create justice. False words can end lives. Withholding words has its own powerful effects. Join us this year to explore Jewish practices for compassionate and just speech, as a foundation for growing our integrity and building a compassionate and just world. By learning and experimenting together, we create a community of practice that can lift us all up to places that we can’t reach on our own. We’ll explore these practices as a foundation for our community going forward, building a laboratory for loving and truthful speech.

Volunteers are needed at all services! Please consider volunteering as part of your High Holy Days practice. Click here to sign up or email Beth at Beth@kehillasynagogue.org


Directions & Parking


Services will be held at the
Scottish Rite Center 1547 Lakeside Drive, Oakland 94612, unless otherwise noted.

You can view directions here.

Where do I park?

Our generous friends at Douglas Parking are offering free parking during Kehilla High Holy Days evening services on Erev Rosh Hashanah, 9/13, 5:00 pm to 10:00pm and Kol Nidre, 9/22, 5:00pm- to 10:00pm. Parking for a fee will be available for the daytime services on Rosh Hashanah, 9/14 and Yom Kippur, 9/23. The lots are located at:
Lot 69 at Harrison and 15th Streets
Lot 46 at Harrison and 15th Streets, across the street from Lot 69
Lot 8 at Harrison and 19th.

Please note that the parking lot at the Scottish Rite Center is for people with disabilities only, and must be pre-reserved. Disability parking reservations can be requested here.


Family and Child Offerings

Kehilla wants to support each family in finding the perfect mix of experiences that will help you connect with the community and the spirit of the High Holy Days. We are offering the following services and programs for children, youth and families as well as a youth lounge and childcare.

Family Services

This year we’re offering two special services that are geared toward school-age kids, and that offer a path of spiritual practice for people of all ages. Our Rosh Hashana morning and Kol Nidre family services invite young people into the themes and practices of the Holy Days through songs, movement, conversation and spontaneously acted-out stories with volunteer players! In these relaxed, shorter services, we move through the touch points of the Days of Awe–the special melodies and prayers, shofar sounding, self-reflection, Torah procession, and the sparkling possibilities of new beginnings. Please join us for Family High Holy Day Services at Kehilla: Tickets can be purchased by clicking here

Rosh Hashanah Family & Youth Service: Monday, September 14, 10am. With Rabbi Dev Noily, Sandra Razieli and Musical Prayer Leader Beth Dickinson. All ages of children, teens and adults welcomed. (meet on 3rd Floor at the Scottish Rite Center).

Family Kol Nidre (Erev Yom Kippur) Tuesday, Sep. 22, 6:30pm-7:45pm. At Kehilla Community Synagogue
Led by Rabbi Dev Noily. All ages of children, teens and adults welcome. Free admission for Kehilla members. General public attending only this service can purchase admission in advance.

Young Children Activities/Offerings

Family Tot Program, Erev Rosh Hashana 6:30pm-7:30pmWith Jen Miriam Kantor and Alon Altman. For children ages 0 – 5 and their grown-ups. (meet on 3rd Floor at the Scottish Rite Center).  Tickets are not required for this program. Donations at the door appreciated.

Family Tot Program, Yom Kippur Morning 10:30am-11:30am With Jen Miriam Kantor and Alon Altman. For children ages 0 – 5 and their grown-ups. (meet on 3rd Floor at the Scottish Rite Center). Tickets are not required for this program. Donations at the door appreciated.

Youth Lounge-During High Holy Days, all youth in grades 6 through 12 are expected to be in the Youth Lounge or in services. On Rosh Hashanah, Youth Lounge participants also decide where Kehilla sends a portion of the tzedakah money raised during the High Holy Days. The Youth Lounge is a great place for youth to come and hang out with friends that they might not get to see every day, and to make new friends. For Kehilla members, the Youth Pass is a membership benefit, so there is no fee. You can register for the Youth Lounge at services. Youth Lounge is not available on 2nd Day Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur afternoon services

For the General Public, you will need to purchase your Youth Lounge pass

Childcare- Childcare is available for ages 2-through grade 5. You must pre-purchase your childcare pass. For Kehilla members and the General Public, you will need to purchase your Childcare pass. There is no child care available on 2nd Day Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur afternoon services.


A Message from the Accessibility Chevra

This year we have fewer resources for both volunteers and staff, and so we are adjusting the way we manage High Holy Days seating. Rather than making individual advance arrangements for attendees with particular seating needs due to concerns about mobility, chemical sensitivity, hearing and visibility, there will be ample designated areas that can meet the community’s various accessibility needs. Seating will be available on a first-come basis.

Arriving early will mean greater choice for you and will help us make suitable arrangements for everyone. Later in the service empty seats will be released to others who may not require any accommodation.

Arriving scent-free will increase the availability of seating choices for everyone. As in previous years the left half the main floor and the loge will be designated as scent-free seating, and in the balcony, the first quarter on the left closest to the bima will be designated as scent-free.

ACCESSIBILITY PARKING: We will continue the past practice of advance reservations for the limited number of parking spaces available in the rear parking lot of the Scottish Rite Center, for drivers with disability parking placards and with the greatest need.

Disability parking reservations can be requested here

We are proud of Kehilla’s history in providing accommodations for the High Holy Days services to assist with mobility, chemical sensitivity, hearing and visibility needs. It is an important Kehilla value to anticipate and maintain our awareness of the large numbers in our community with particular accessibility needs in these areas. We hope that the groundwork of goodwill established with individuals and the community over the past years of intensive personal attention will extend to a spirit of communal support as we shift to a system that is more manageable and sustainable.

Frequently Asked Questions About High Holy Days Services

1. How many friends/family can sit with me in the reserved section?

This depends on where you need to sit. Sections of the floor (i.e. the first few rows) will be reserved only for people with disabilities and their parties until a certain point in the service.

a. In the first few rows from the bima (forward seating area for lip reading, etc.) please plan on just one companion, because seating there is so limited.
b. Elsewhere on the main floor (no-stairs) we ask you to limit to 4 total in your party in the accessibility reserved areas.
c. Scent-free seating with stairs (loge and balcony) is open to as many people as wish to sit there on a first-come basis.

2. I have a better idea for seating, can I move the chairs?

PLEASE DO NOT MOVE CHAIRS on your own; although it may seem reasonable to you to make a change to the arrangement, the setup has been prepared taking into account safety, fire code restrictions and the planned choreography of the service. Your change is likely to conflict with these considerations. Please consult with an usher instead of moving chairs-we will try to be flexible and creative with you.

3. What if I am disturbed by scent in a scent-free section?

There are two possibilities: you can move, or the scented person can move. How this happens may involve an usher to help you, but we encourage you to have a conversation directly with that person to see what you can work out. Please think in advance how you might approach this kind of situation in a way that feels consistent with the spirit of the Holy Days.

Although we have prepared a “scent-free area,” in this very large space with open circulation and nonrestricted areas it can be only relatively scent free. It is a seriously-held request for everyone to cooperate for the comfort of those who need it. Our community has increased in understanding about this issue and what it means to be “scent-free” over the years, but Kehilla High Holy Days welcomes many first-timers who may not be in a position to review the scent-free requests and information provided in advance. Each conversation is an opportunity to engage others in a positive understanding of the community’s potential to make a comfortable gathering experience for all.



Recordings of High Holy Day Melodies

Enjoy listening, learning, and singing along with these beloved High Holy Day melodies for your spiritual enrichment. Hebrew, transliterations, and translations of the liturgy are available here.