Immediately following Sukkot, we celebrate Simchat Torah. Simchat Torah means “happiness of the Torah.” Simchat Torah is a holiday whereby we celebrate the completion of the Torah reading cycle and begin to read Torah from the beginning again.
Many congregations take the Torah scrolls from the ark.; congregants carry or dance around the synagogue seven times. During the Torah service, the concluding section of the fifth book of the Torah, D’varim (Deuteronomy), is read, and immediately following, the opening section of Genesis, or B’reishit (the first passage of the Torah) is read. This practice represents the cyclical nature of the relationship between the Jewish people and the reading of the Torah and confirms the importance of the Torah in our lives.
Dates (Jewish Holidays begin at Sundown):
2014 – October 15 – October 16
2015 – October 5 – October 6
2016 – October 24 – October 25
2017 – October 12 – October 13