Special Years & Periodic Events
Year of Hakhel - Celebrating Jewish Unity
Every seven years is a Hakhel year. In ancient times, during a Hakhel year, Jews would stream to Jerusalem to unite in the Holy Temple, and hear Torah from the king.
Today, you are the king. You have the power to unite Jews.
A Year of Faith
The Shemitah (Sabbatical) Year—its laws, traditions and timeless messages.
Like the seventh day of the week, every seventh year is holy. The Shemitah (Sabbatical) year is a year devoted to strengthening our bond with G‑d—specifically, honing our faith in His omnipotence and our trust in His kindness.
The year 5782 since creation (September 7, 2021 - September 25, 2022) is a Shemitah year. The articles and classes in the following sections will discuss this year’s special observances as well as its spiritual message.
Wishing you an inspiring, uplifting, and meaningful Shemitah year!
Birkat Hachamah - Blessing G-d for the Sun
When the sun returns to the same position, at the same time of the week, that it occupied at the time of its creation, we recite a special blessing. This mitzvah was last performed on April 8, 2009. Its next occurrence will be, G‑d willing, April 8, 2037.
The Jewish Leap Year
The Jewish "leap year", which occurs seven times in a 19-year cycle, has 13 months instead of the regular year's 12. This is so that the lunar-based Jewish year should remain aligned with the solar seasons (12 lunar months make up a total of 354 days — slightly more than 11 days short of the 365.25 day solar cycle). The added month is called "Adar I" and is inserted before the month of Adar (termed "Adar II" in leap years).