vibrant, inclusive and community-centered

High Holidays- General Information

Shana Tova-- wishing you a sweet new year!  We look forward to celebrating with you on the High Holidays for 5777/2016!  

If you are new to the area or to Temple Israel, please come by and visit or contact our office for more information about the temple and about celebrating the High Holidays here.

At our High Holiday services, we have two teams of clergy, Rabbi Daniel Liben with Cantor Ken Richmond, and Rabbi Laureate Harold Kushner with Joel Sussman of Safam fame, and we hold the main services in two locations, the sanctuary/ social hall, and a large tent in the parking lot.  We now use the Lev Shalem Mahzor which includes transliteration, and many interesting readings and explanations.  In addition, we hold fantastic family services for toddlers age 2-K with parents, and engaging drop-off youth services for grades 1-7.  And on the second day of Rosh Hashanah, we offer a broad-based family service in the tent, led by Rabbi Liben and Cantor Ken, with Rabbi Kushner and Joel Sussman leading a traditional service in the sanctuary.  

HIGH HOLIDAYS: Quick links!

Forms including Youth & Family Service Registration



Food Drive 

Common Courtesies  

Sukkot & Simchat Torah

Family Holiday Resources: a packet from Judy Gordon Nursery school, Rav Shira's Blogs for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, and High Holiday Sing-Along with Cantor Ken


This year we have once again set aside the entire lower back parking lot of the synagogue for those with HP designated plates. Please be respectful of those people who do require these spaces. You will be asked to move your car if you do not have the appropriate license plate or handicap mirror tag. If you require a handicap parking space or special arrangements for handicapped or wheelchair seating, please call the Temple office (508-650-3521 ext 100) or complete the form found here.

The rear entrance to the synagogue foyer is wheelchair accessible. Those needing assistance entering the building may be dropped off in circular driveway at the front of the building. Our sanctuary is equipped with a hearing assistance listening system and a limited number of large print Mahzorim are available. When you arrive at services, please ask an usher for either item. In the case of a medical emergency, an AED is located in the Chapel ark – immediately to the right of the Torahs.


Congregants are asked to not bring cell phones or beepers into services. If you are a health care professional on-call, please put your cell phone/beeper on “vibrate”. We keep juice and challah available in the kitchen on Yom Kippur for congregants who may feel ill and need something to eat or drink.


On the first day of Rosh Hashanah (Monday, 10/3) and Yom Kippur, the Young Family Services will start at 11:00am and end at 12:30pmFor these services (birth-Kindergarten) we ask one or both parents (or another adult) to stay and attend the services with their children. This unique and lively program will include stories, songs, stations, and snacks. Click here for the required registration.

On the first day of Rosh HaShanah (Monday, 10/3) and on Yom Kippur we will have Youth Services for children in grades 1-7. Services will begin promptly at 10:45am and conclude at 12:45pm. Click here for the required registration.

We will again hold a Family Service on the second day of Rosh Hashanah (10/4) in the tent. Beginning at 10:00am and ending at 12:00pm, this warm, meaningful creative service is filled with joy, song, story and of course, shofar blowing; it will be led by Rabbi Liben and Cantor Ken and is geared for families with children of all ages. FAQs about the Family service are answered here.

We are offering a teen discussion on Mon., 10/3 and Wed., 10/12, from 11-noon in the chapel.

In general, young children are invited to join their parents at services in all locations prior to the start of children’s services - however - we ask that you respect the needs of those praying around you by bringing your child out should he/she become noisy or fussy.  

Please remember - in order to maintain overall decorum and a sense of spirituality during services, we ask that you take responsibility to assure that your children are either in their assigned program or with you at all times. Please do not let your children wander around the building or grounds. 


We are offering complimentary babysitting in the nursery school wing: 

  • On the 1st day of Rosh Hashanah (10/3), 9:00-11:00 AM
  • On the 2nd day of Rosh Hashanah (10/4), 10:00 AM- 12:45 PM (during the tent family service and sermons)
  • On Yom Kippur (10/12), 9:00-11:00 AM

The chapel is available for nursing moms and will have the sanctuary service piped into there. Moms are also welcome to nurse in services or anywhere else in the buliding. From 11-noon, when the teen discussion is taking place, nursing moms can use room 4 downstairs in the nursery school wing.

Please make sure you and your children leave these areas in the same condition that you found them. Please be especially careful to leave any toys and books in in the nursery school wing where you found them.  Due to dietary restrictions and food allergies, outside food will not be allowed in babysitting, except for children with special dietary requirements.  Please do not bring any food containing nuts.


The Board of Directors has been actively involved in creating a safe secure environment. We continue to have conversations with Police, Fire, and Safety Marshall personnel from the town of Natick. They have been both cooperative and sensitive to our situation and needs.  While we are in services, Natick Police will patrol both inside and outside of the building. At certain high traffic times, Police will help direct the flow of cars. The Police Department has also assured us they will step-up their “pass through” drives at the synagogue at off peak hours during, prior to, and after the High Holydays and Chaggim.

PLEASE REMEMBER TO BRING YOUR TICKETS EACH TIME YOU ENTER THE BUILDING. Everyone arriving with a ticket will be admitted immediately. Anyone who does not have a ticket and who is not listed on our Membership Roster could be screened and under certain conditions, there is a possibility those people will not be admitted to the building. Continuing the precautions instituted in the last few years, any items brought into the synagogue may be subject to search.

It is our belief that by following these procedures we can best ensure the safety and security of all congregants. By adopting these common sense precautionary measures, we can all feel comfortable and safe worshipping and socializing in our building and on our grounds. In light of these procedures, we recommend that you allow extra time for entering the building/tent before all services. We ask for your understanding, cooperation, and patience through this process. 


For Temple members, in good standing, who may be traveling during the High Holydays and wish to attend another Conservative congregation, there are courtesy seating request forms available. Please call the Temple office for help in making these arrangements. Out-of-town guests who are members of a United Synagogue affiliate, must have their synagogue administrator send a letter to Temple Israel stating they are members in good standing and we will provide complimentary tickets (Sanctuary surcharge of $60 will apply). Complimentary tickets for active duty military personnel are available upon presentation of a valid military identification card. Additionally, if you know that your seats will not be used, don’t let them go to waste; please inform the Temple office. Your mitzvah will enable a college student or someone else with need to attend services at this most sacred time of year.

The High Holydays are also a prime season for "shul shoppers." Please recommend Temple Israel to your friends/family who might be in this group. For those who attend High Holyday services and subsequently join Temple Israel by the end of the (secular) year, the price of their ticket(s) will be applied toward their first year’s membership dues. Where there is financial hardship, dues can be adjusted – no one is denied membership due to fiscal restraints. Those who need financial consideration will have their privacy and dignity respected.