On this solemn and yet ultimately hopeful occasion—Monday night, July 31—we gather under dim lighting and low seating like mourners. Ma’ariv and the chanting of Eikhah, the Book of Lamentations, create a mood of reflection and sadness.
During morning services on Tuesday, August 1, the Torah and Haftarah readings as well as kinot (poems emphasizing the destruction of the Temple, national exile and refugee status) are read. As a sign of despair, tallit and tefillin are not worn at Shaẖarit.
We return later that day for Minḥah wearing these prayer garments to signal the end of mourning and to express the hope for national redemption and the re-dedication of the Temple.
Tzedakah collected this year will be directed to the Masorti movement in support of the gathering of Jews at Azarat Yisrael, the egalitarian section of the Western Wall.