Frequently Asked Questions

High Holy Days 2021

Why are High Holy Day services going to be on-line this year?

Our Board of Directors accepted the recommendation of our High Holy Day Taskforce, which includes CEC lay and professional leadership, as well as medical public health professionals. There was unanimous agreement that until there is a vaccine which is not expected before 2021, we could not gather safely in the numbers that attend on High Holy Days. Protecting lives - pikuach nefesh is the highest priority in Judaism.

Will anyone be attending services in-person?

At a minimum we will have a Minyan (a quorum of 10 Jewish adults) which will include the Rabbi, Cantor, Torah reader, staff, and a few others to ensure that services run as efficiently as possible.

How will I be able to access services?

You will need to contact our office at 204-589-6305 to make arrangements for your “virtual ticket”. Once you have made your arrangements you will be provided with an access code and be able to participate in our livestream services. In the coming weeks, there will be more specific details about how to tune in.

Will there be Shofar blowing this year?

Shofar will be blown beginning in the month of Elul. This means that prior to the start of our weekday services (M-Th) at 6pm via Zoom, someone will blow the Shofar. There is a Halachic justification where one can fulfill one’s obligation for hearing the shofar through amplified electronic means in cases of extreme duress. The Shofar will also be heard on the 2nd Day of Rosh Hashanah via our Virtual Service. Since the first day falls on Shabbat we do not blow the Shofar. You will also be able to hear the Shofar live and in-person at our outdoor Tashlich service.

What will I use for a Mahzor this year?

Thanks to a generous gift from a member family we are pleased to introduce a new Mahzor this year - Mahzor Lev Shalem. We will provide copies for you to use with the purchase of your “virtual ticket”. We will then make arrangements to collect them after the High Holy Days.

Will there still be a family service and/or children’s services?

We have the unique opportunity to gather as one congregation for the core of our worship services this year. We also hope to provide moments where you will have opportunities within the structure of the services to choose from a variety of options that will be customized towards families and children.

Will there be a choir this year?

Yes! Our Virtual Voices choir will be performing live this year. In addition there will be some pre-recorded pieces that are certain to enhance and uplift our services.

Will services be the same length as usual?

Understanding the uniqueness of the livestreaming platform, we have designed our services to be shorter in length overall. We will be providing several options throughout each day to engage in interactive learning, activities and introspection.

Is there going to be Tashlich?

Our plan today is to hold an in-person Tashlich service (location TBA) for individuals and families who wish to join us. Details for how to register will be made available soon.

How can I participate in services?

We are looking for people who are interested in pre-recording (prior to High Holidays) a brief introduction of some of the prayers recited throughout Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. For more information, please contact Cantor Tracy at

How should I dress for services?

We suggest that some level of dressing up could add a sense of holiness to the day, however, dressing more comfortably is perfectly acceptable. Feel free to wear a Tallit and/or head covering just like you would in shul. There is also a tradition to wear white on Yom Kippur, and to abstain from wearing leather shoes.

Will the Etz Chayim catering department be providing takeout meals for Rosh Hashanah?

Yes, you will be able to order takeout meals by contacting Margo Carr at or by calling 204-589-6305 ext. 522. Our takeout menu is also available here.