Prepared by Rabbi Daniel Coleman BCC
Yarmulke: Head covering (skull-cap)
Tallis: Prayer shawl. A smaller version is referred to as ‘tzitzis’
Tefillin: Boxes containing passages of the Hebrew Scripture worn during prayer. These are located in a bag in a blue locker in the Volunteer Office. The name & phone number of pt or staff-member should be taken before they borrow it.
Minyan: Quorum of 10 (minimum) necessary for prayer to be considered ‘communal’ rather than individual. It is praiseworthy to gather as a (micro) community for the morning (shacharit), afternoon (Mincha), and evening (maariv) prayers.
Mincha: In the winter months (Nov thru Feb approx) we schedule communal afternoon prayer (minyan) 1 day a week at 2pm in the meditation room.
Other than this, we do not have an organized/scheduled minyan on campus, even for the holidays.
Siddur: (pronounced sidoor) Prayerbook. Jewish books open/read from right to left. There are slight variations in some prayers and their pronunciation depending on which community the family belongs to/comes from. Jews from the East e.g. Persian/Iranian will want a sefardi version. Jews hailing from Europe will appreciate being offered an ashkenaz siddur and, generally, Chassidic Jews will use sefard
Seder: (pronounced Say-der) Literally meaning ‘order,’ the seder is a series of rituals and proceedings designed to relive the experience of feeling and becoming free. It is observed on the first night or two nights of Passover, depending on religious temperament.
Machzor: Name of the prayer-book for Holidays, especially Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur
Haggadah: This book/booklet accompanies and guides the reader thru the Passover Seder
Chumash: (Hoomush) aka Hebrew Bible.
Tehillim: Hebrew for Psalms. (We have several light blue copies of a translated/transliterated NYBR version. These may be kept by patients/families, unlike other religious books that we would like returned to us after use.)
Yizkor: Short prayer-service recited on (the last day of) major Holidays in memory of loved ones. Booklets with the Yizkor service are available in the meditation room or downloadable online.
Kosher: Food that has Rabbinic supervision to ensure that the ingredients, production-process etc. complies with Jewish-law. Kosher sandwiches and salads are available for purchase in the fridge near to the cashiers in the cafeteria.
Bikkur Cholim: Hebrew for ‘visiting the sick’. Many large hospitals have a group of friendly visitors from the local community that visit the sick. Sometimes visitors will ask about a bikkur cholim room. Please clarify what they are looking for.
Shabbat: Sabbath, the Day of Rest, which begins on Friday evening and concludes sundown on Saturday.
Shabbat Candles: Two candles are lit to welcome in the Sabbath (aka Shabbos) on Friday evening. Some have the custom to lite an extra candle for each member of the family.
Eruv: (pronounced Ay-roov) A symbolic boundary around an area (street, campus, town etc.) that allows observant Jews to carry certain items on the Sabbath between individual dwellings/buildings within the boundary/designated area.