Returning to Rosh Chodesh

Dear Congregation Beth Israel members and friends,

Some of you may remember that CBI used to have a Rosh Chodesh group, a monthly gathering for women at or near the time of the new moon.

Rosh Chodesh means “head of the month,” colloquially “new moon” — it’s the festival at the start of each lunar month, which for a variety of reasons is traditionally associated with women and celebrated by women. (For more on that, see Why Rosh Chodesh is Linked to Women at My Jewish Learning, and Why Is Rosh Chodesh Special to Women? at

With help from the women of our Spiritual Life committee, this winter we’re going to reboot and restart our Rosh Chodesh group!


Our intergenerational Rosh Chodesh circle is for women-identified and gender-non-conforming folks. We will welcome in each new lunar month by lighting candles, learn together, exercise our creativity in a variety of ways (writing, making art, baking — something different each time we meet), and explore the emotional and spiritual tone of this time of year.

Our first meeting will be on Sunday March 10 at 5pm at CBI, when we will celebrate Rosh Chodesh for the incoming lunar month of Adar II. We’ll meet on Sunday afternoons / early evenings on dates closes to each new moon (the first few sessions will be on March 10, April 7, and May 5.) 

I will plan learning, art projects, and/or other activities for our first handful of sessions. By summertime it is my hope that others will want to step up and claim sessions, so that starting in summer, each month our gathering will be planned and facilitated by someone different. This will offer our community opportunities to experience a variety of different ideas, practices, and approaches to Rosh Chodesh.

All are welcome, but if you know you’re coming, please RSVP to rabbibarenblat at gmail dot com to help me prepare the right quantities of supplies!

Blessings to all,

Rabbi Rachel


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