Local Jews celebrate Shabbat Under the Stars

Second annual event focuses on prayer, family and a festive meal
September 1, 2023

A clear sky and beautiful sunset made for a perfect night for Shabbat Under the Stars.

The second annual event was held Aug. 25 at Chabad of Southern Delaware near Lewes.

“It’s an opportunity for the community to come together and celebrate the Shabbat,” said Rabbi Sholom Vogel, who hosted the celebration.

The Jewish Shabbat, or Sabbath, begins Friday at sundown and lasts until Saturday at sundown.

About 40 people attended this year’s Shabbat Under the Stars.

“It’s a time to celebrate Judaism, our tradition and our faith together in a relaxing and enjoyable way,” Vogel said.

The celebration kicked off with Rabbi Vogel blowing the traditional shofar, or ram’s horn.

His wife, Chanale Vogel, then led the women in a candle-lighting ceremony. Rabbi Vogel said lighting candles is a way of honoring the Sabbath, which brings a sense of calmness and serenity to the house.

While candles were being lit inside, Rabbi Vogel was leading the men in a prayer service called Kabbalat Shabbat, or ushering in the Sabbath, outside.

Both men and women came together for prayer and singing before dinner, which was served at sundown.

The menu included challah, salad, chicken soup with matzah balls, breaded chicken, and chocolate mousse for dessert.

“Tasty food, vibrant community and a convivial atmosphere are the highlights of the night,” said Rabbi Vogel.

All photos in this article were taken before sundown, in accordance with Jewish tradition.

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