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Rabbi Would Abolish Yom Kippur

December 17, 1923
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

In a sermon on the question, “Is the Younger Generation Godless?” Rabbi J. Max Weis of the Heights Free Synagogue, at West 158th Street and Broadway, appealed for the abolition of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, on the ground that “it makes for hypocricy and fails to touch the consciences of men.”

“The Day of Atonement makes for hypocrisy,” said Rabbi Weis, “It is one of the last remnants of our outworn institutions in the Jewish faith. People crowd the synagogues in superstitious fear, unmoved and uninfluenced by the ritual of the day. Its prayers fail to touch the consciences of men. It man is to make amenas for his sins, and for his wrongs to society, he should weigh his actions each day in the light of society’s best thought and experience and with a spirit of hope and determination, resolve to live on the highest possible plane of conduct. Rosh Hashanah, or New Year Day is full of inspirations, but Yom Kippur is outworn and valueless, and weighted with gloominess.”

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