#Carley-barley, try-chitza'd, partnership-style leading, old-skool liturgy with new-fangled Kavanot
Roots uses Hebrew liturgy, while working to make the services as inclusive as possible. These services are held for all daytime services on Rosh Hashanah, and all Yom Kippur services from Kol Nidre through to Neilah.
I'd like to know more about this service.
#open-seating, multi-gendered service leading throughout, why-chitza, trad-prog elements
New to 2016! Shoots services draw from a range of liturgies and experiment with different service formats. These services have open seating and all roles can be fulfilled by any gender. They will be running on three occasions; for Pseukei de Zimra and Shacharit on both days Rosh Hashanah and Mincha and afternoon Torah Service on Yom Kippur.
As there's no Chazan, no Rabbi and indeed no choir, the only voices to be heard are ours. We are all participants in GRJ and want everyone to feel inspired and enthused to join in. Some tunes will be familiar, others perhaps less so, but please do sing or hum/’lai-lai-lai’ along. It will also make our gracious service leaders feel really great.
One of the key aims of Grassroots Jews is to create a prayer and High Holiday experience that has meaning, colour and depth. We want to engage with the liturgy while allowing everyone to be themselves. When you come, you'll bring your own unique take on this wonderful evolving project in exploratory and experiential spirituality. We love praying, sharing, learning and celebrating together. We even create resources and seek out mentors amongst ourselves so that Torah verses in the services can be chanted by GRJ participants - some of us for the very first time.
Our services and sessions straddle multiple traditions and innovations. We're delighted to be formed by Orthodox, Masorti, Renewal, Reform, Liberal, Unaffiliated, confused, amused and wandering Jews and their loved ones. Below are some further details on what you can be part of creating - in advance or on the day - and when you sign up to come, you can let us know how you'd like to take part.
Experimentation is the stuff Grassroots is made of. We are experimenting this year with having two tracks of services Roots and Shoots. You can pick and choose which services to go to, and have a mix between them both or choose one that suits you more. All GRJ services are highly engaged with Jewish traditions and all services have elements of innovation. What we find is unique to all services at GRJ is that every single service has two co-leaders. This pair will have planned the format, music, words and reflections of the service together. We love this approach and we find it invites are more collective prayer experience.
This year, about 40 special souls (approx 10% of our gathered community!) will step up and read from the Torah, some for the very first time. Many have told us that taking part in this is the highlight of their High Holiday experience. GRJ Torah services are completely communally led, with help from a team of friendly mentors, and a handy set of recordings.
Shofar blowing is also open to all genders, with certain parameters to fit into the Orthodox framework. For this it would help if you can already toot a trumpet. No matter how new, rusty, or polished you are, you will have a chance to step up when you sign up.
There are many ways to engage with the High Holidays, and we find that each year the GRJ community is full of friends who are able to lead us in a rich programme of parallel sessions: from meditation to qi gong, from study sessions, to singing circles. Each session connects with the themes of the day as perceived by the facilitator, and provides depth on your journey, whether you dive in, or just dip your toe!
Every year the number of families with small children who attend Grassroots increases. We have moved quickly from a community founded by dozens of 20-30 somethings to a community of hundreds, which now includes our parents, our grandparents and our children.
We welcome babies and children to attend all elements of our high holy days celebration. Feel free to breastfeed wherever you wish. We provide a dedicated family space where appropriate books, toys, snacks, bottle washing and changing facilities are included.
This year, 2016, we are also test-running provision of childcare, so that parents can participate fully in grown up sessions or services for a while. Space for this is limited, and you must contact us in advance with your child's . However, the family room is open to all, with festival-themed games and songs for you to play and learn with your children. There'll even be a spot of yoga, and a baby nap tent for small snoozes!
Provision for families is particularly expensive, in terms of staff and insurance, and we welcome any donations and support.
GRJ is famed for creating itself from the input of all 300 or so members. And that includes...lunch! Yum! For each day of Rosh Hashanah that you attend, we are all requested and expected to bring a vegan or vegetarian dish, matching the allocations below, which are divided by first names (e.g. if your name starts with 'A' you will bring a main course on RH Day 1 and some drink (soft or alcoholic) on RH Day 2. Please no meat, no fish, and ensure cheese that you use is marked as vegetarian or kosher.
RH Day 1: A-J: Main dish K-L: Dips M-N: Salads O-Q: Challah R-S: Desserts T-U: Fruit V-Z: Drinks
RH Day 2: A: Drinks B-C: Dips D-E: Salads F-G: Fruit H-J: Desserts K: Challah L-Z Main Dish
2016 marks the first ever Grassroots Jews 10 Days Programme, spanning across the time between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Traditionally this has always been a time for deep introspection, reflection & return to one’s Highest Self, a spiralling escalation of awareness in the run up to Yom Kippur. We have curated a series of diverse events designed to stimulate and provoke thought, and increase our awareness creatively, from true life tales to a special event for World Mental Health Day. Events are open to members and non-members of GRJ2016.
ENTRY GRJ2016 NON-MEMBERS: £6 suggested donation. All proceeds go to The Bike Project. GRJ2016 MEMBERS: FREE (but you'd be welcome to donate to the GRJ Tzedakah project as well if you'd like to!)
Every year we co-create a community full of warmth, friendship and brilliantcan-do attitude at GRJ. The Tzedakah Project sends this out beyond the religious and spiritual, and our postcode. Our 2016 theme is Food and Refuge and our three partners are Clara Nehab House, The Bike Project, and FEAST!
Food is an integral part of GRJ – all those pot-luck lunches! – and seeking refuge has been a recurring experience for Jewish community over the centuries.
We’ve designed the project so that you can contribute in different, equally valued ways, whether it is your time, your money, your support, or your singing voice! Read on to find out how you can help.
A brilliant charity which fixes second-hand bikes and donates them to asylum seekers & refugees, who often cannot afford public transport.
DONATE RIGHT NOW to our GRJ crowdfunding page: https://localgiving.org/fundraising/grj2016
We'll also be collecting donations for the Bike Project as part of your entry to Elul and 10Days events.
Donate your time to FEAST! every Thursday from 5.30-8.30pm, throughout Elul (September) and beyond.
Join Hannah, a GRJ2016 member, supported by a friendly and familiar crew cooking and sharing a delicious dinner with residents at a homeless shelter in Kilburn.
Sign up to help by completing this form.
A residential and dementia care home for the senior Jewish community, close to this year's venue. We want to reach a generation which is less represented at GRJ, and spend time with the residents; to hear their stories and to offer some beautiful Grassroots singing and ruach (spirit) in return. We are visiting them on 1 October, for Shabbat Dinner on Friday 7th October, and maybe once more if they'll have us back. Contact Ali if you'd like to visit them, on abodinsaphir(at)gmail(dot)com.
Have you got #refugenes? Looking for a practical way to help child refugees in Calais? Support the Safe Passage project to save lives
There are an estimated 150 unaccompanied children in the refugee camps around Calais who have family living in the UK. They currently live in abject poverty and constant risk of violence. Yet there is a legal route for them to be reunited with their families and afforded the care and safety they deserve. Safe Passage UK are this legal route. Many Jewish families here in the UK are the descendants of the Kindertransport children, who were saved in a very similar way, by private spoonsorship. We can do the same again.
Safe Passage UK needs to raise £2,000 per child to cover the cost of the legal process, transport and support the child will need to claim asylum here in Britain. Ultimately it is £2,000 to reunite them with their families. Please consider donating whatever you can by clicking here.
The Honouring Cave is a space to reflect and connect with our ancestors, and our loved ones who have died in more recent times. You can send photos, memories and stories to email@example.com, and they'll be put up in the space, or you can bring copies yourself. In addition, our Yizkor team will be offering support during the High Holy Days. In particular there will be a listening circle just after Yizkor, the memorial service, which happens on Yom Kippur at 12.30pm/
The lunar month of Elul leads up to Rosh Hashanah. Each year we plan a GRJ Elul program, which focuses on preparing our hearts, minds and bodies for the New Year.
The Elul Program aims to offer you the opportunity to prepare and awaken yourself to the Days of Awe in a thoughtful way. It's an ingathering of our GRJ community, offering different spaces to be together - to be opened, nourished and attentive to our emotional, spiritual and intellectual hunger.
Find all the events at: www.grassrootsjews.org/grj2016-calendar or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org