Before sunset, the day is marked by acts of charity and pleas for forgiveness. Two special meals also precede a 25-hour fast; synagogue attendance typically surges for the solemn rituals, where hours are spent in reflection and special prayers. Work on this day is forbidden.
The day's ultimate purpose is to seek redemption in the eyes of G-d.
The looming threat of terrorism has caused Nassau County and federal authorities to increase patrols around synagogues during the High Holy Days. Many synagogues are requiring photo identification for admission and have quietly increased their own security efforts, experts said.
Yom Kippur completes the annual period known as the High Holy Days or Yamim Nora'im ("Days of Awe") which began with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. Many area synagogues conduct open services on Wednesday; see our events calendar for some of these.
Jewish teachings hold that G-d inscribes a person's fate for the coming year into the "Book of Life" on Rosh Hashanah and waits until Yom Kippur to "seal" the verdict. Between the two High Holy Days, Jews attempt to amend their behavior and seek forgiveness for wrongs done to G-d and their fellow man, Jewish scholars say.
Like most districts on Long Island, East Hampton area schools are closed on Wednesday.
Here is service information for Yom Kippur:
Jewish Center of the Hamptons:
- Tuesday: Kol Nidre service at 8 p.m.
- Wednesday: Yom Kippur morning service at 9:30 a.m. Study with Rabbi Zimmerman and healing service with Cantor Stein at 1 p.m., Children's service at 2:30 p.m., with afternoon, Yizkor and Neilah services at 3:30 p.m.
Chabad Lubavitch of the Hamptons
- Tuesday: Kol Nidre service at 6:30 p.m., candel lighting at 6:22 p.m.
- Wednesday: Morning service at 9 a.m., children's service between 11 and 1 p.m., Yizkor service at 12 p.m., Mincha & Neilah service at 5:15 p.m., and Community Break Fast Buffet when the fast ends at 7:19 p.m.
*For Sukkot services, see attached flyer
Temple Adas Israel:
- Tuesday: Yom Kippur begins with the fast starting at 6:24 p.m. The Kol Nidre Service is at 8 p.m.
- Wednesday: 10 a.m.: Yom Kippur morning service begins at 10 a.m., and continues throughout the day, with stories, songs and activities for children 6 and under at 11:45 a.m. A Seder Ha'Avodah (study and song on the origin and meaning of Atonement) will be held at 2 p.m. A Yom Kippur Family Service for children 10 and under will begin at 3:00 p.m. Minchah (afternoon) Service starts at 4:00 p.mm. with the Yizkor Memorial Service at 6:00 p.m. The concluding Neilah service will be held at 6:45 p.m., with the final shofar blast at 7:25 p.m. (Children are asked to wear white and go up on the bima). Havdalah and Break the Fast follows and everyone is invited to join us.
The Conservative Synagogue of the Hamptons*:
- Tuesday: Kol Nidre services on the eve of Yom Kippur will take place at 6:15 p.m.
- Wednesday: Services, including Yizkor, are at 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., including Minchah and Neilah prayers. There will be a festive community break-fast following the sounding of the Shofar and the Havdalah service, which concludes at 7:23 p.m.
*All services are held at the Old Whalers Church
Editor's Note: The spelling of "G-d" is intentional in this story in respect of a Jewish tradition. See the link for details.