Yom Kippur this year begins the evening of September 13. That means, the countdown to the annual synagogue marathon and 25 hours sans food or drink begins now. But in between the Rabbi’s sermon and rumbling stomachs, Yom Kippur can be a wonderful time to serve.
If you plan to be in services all day, much respect! But if you have an hour or more to spare, why not fill it in a meaningful way by making time for service and volunteering? Here are some great ways to serve this Yom Kippur:
Be on the lookout for literature. If you are heading to synagogue this Yom Kippur, take a few minutes to pass by the synagogue bulletin boards or information tables. Chances are, there are plenty of opportunities to plug in and volunteer, or brochures from world-changing organizations waiting there for you to pick them up.
Volunteer at a soup kitchen. For those who fast during Yom Kippur, it may seem a bit cruel and unusual to spend extra time around food. But serving others actually helps the time pass more quickly, and is a meaningful way to engage.
Commit to the Food Stamp Challenge. Raise awareness (yours and other people’s) about the injustices of food insecurity by committing to eat for a week at food stamp rates. If you feel compelled, make a donation to Mazon: A Jewish Response to Hunger as well.
Hold a book swap at your break fast Are you hosting or going to a break fast? Add books to your bagels and lox by organizing a book swap. Ask each guest to bring a few books they no longer want. After everyone drinks their OJ and has their fill of kugel, invite them to browse the books and take some home. Donate any leftover books to an organization like Books Through Bars, Housing Works, or Better World Books.
How will you make time for service this Yom Kippur? Let us know in the comments below or by tweeting us at @repairtheworld.