What is the holiday Lag B’Omer?

Posted by: Stacey Herman on Monday, April 22, 2013 at 10:00:00 am

What is the holiday Lag B’Omer?fire-image

Lag B’Omer.  These Hebrew words translate to “the 33rd day of the Omer.” According to the Torah we are obligated to count the days from the second night of Passover to the day before Shavuot, seven full weeks. This period is known as the Counting of the Omer.  It is a mitvah to count the Omer. Why do we count these days? The 49 days of the Omer correspond both to the time between physical emancipation from Egypt and the spiritual liberation of the giving of the Torah at the foot of Mount Sinai on Shavuot, as well as the time between the barley harvest and the wheat harvest in ancient Israel.

Why do we celebrate the 33rd day? 

During the time of Rabbi Akiva, 24,000 of his students died from a plague during the firsts 33 days.  The 49 days of the Counting of the Omer are mourning days.  We celebrate the 33rd day as the end of the deaths.  .  All restrictions are lifted on the 33rd day.  People celebrate with haircuts, weddings, picnics, and music.  It is also a custom in Israel to light bonfires.

How will we celebrate with our JCC community?

On Sunday, April 28th at 5:30 we will celebrate Lag B’Omer at the JCC.  We will light a bonfire, eat hot dogs, and have relay races.  Come and join us for a fun filled evening!!!!!

 

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