Sunday, May 27, 2012


This weekend, the 26th-to-28th, May 20012 we are celebrating Shavuot.

The Jewish festival of Shavuot, also called the Festival of Bikurim, the Festival of First Fruit, relating to the seven type of fruit the land of Israel was blessed with. The tradition was to bring the first fruit to the Priests in the Temple Jerusalem. Shavuot always occurs on the sixth day of the Hebrew month of Sivan (late May or early June) in which Jews commemorate the anniversary of the day God gave the Torah-Ten Commandments to the entire nation of Israel, who were assembled at Mount Sinai. Shavuot is one of the Shalosh Regalim, the Three Biblical Pilgrimage to the Temple in Jerusalem Festivals. It also marks the conclusion of the Counting of the Omer, the forty-nine days between the Passover and Shavuot.
In the early years of my life I lived in rural Israel. The way we celebrated Shavuot was getting dressed up in white, the girls wore a floral headwear wreath and silky head cover and each child carried with him or her a decorated basket full of fruit of the season. The community would assemble for a country style celebration of dance and song and at school the yard was decorated with hay-bails and the national flags.

Until I was about eight years old I remember the excitement of celebrating Shavuot. Choosing the flowers for and preparing my floral headwear-wreath was an art in itself. Selecting and decorating my fruit basket was another fun step. The white dress my Mom used to buy for me for especially for the holiday made me feel like a princess for a day.

But then, for some reasons, over the years the beautiful customs of Shavuot began to fade away and over the years Shavuot became just another holiday with few days off and less celebration as in the past.

Attached is a photo of my Dad and I attending a celebration of the Festival of Bikurim, Shavuot.

Chag Same'ach-Happy Holiday.

No comments: