One Brandeis comes together to Break the Fast on Yom Kippur

Students, faculty and staff of all faiths and creeds came together to celebrate Yom Kippur

A group of students sits together eating bagels at Break the FastPhoto/Mike Lovett

A group of friends enjoying Break the Fast together

Brandeis students, faculty and staff of all faiths and creeds joined the campus’ Jewish community on Wednesday evening to celebrate the end of Yom Kippur by “Breaking the Fast.”

Yom Kippur, known also as the Day of Atonement, is a sacred holiday on the Jewish calendar which calls Jews to make amends for their sins over the past year and fast from sunset to sunset.

The 25-hour fast, which is a sign of observance of the holiday and a symbolic act self-cleansing, ended with Brandeis community members of all faith and cultural backgrounds joining together beneath a large tent on the Great Lawn for a special dinner.

For Wednesday’s Break the Fast, hundreds of students and staff celebrated with one another by feasting on a seemingly endless supply of bagels, lox, cream cheese, tabbouleh, hummus and an assortment of fruit and cookies.

Marissa Torelli and Jolie Suchin at Break the Fast
Photo/Mike Lovett

Marissa Torelli ’22 (left) Jolie Suchin ’22

Marissa Torelli ’22 of Windsor, Connecticut and Jolie Suchin ’22 of Westchester, New York attended Break the Fast for the first time on Wednesday night. Both agreed that the campus coming together was inspiring.

“I think it’s cool to see the entire community of our school coming together,” Torelli said. “I didn’t grow up Jewish or have many friends who are Jewish, so this has been a nice learning experience for me.”

“Although I’m not Jewish, I feel as welcomed as those who are,” said Suchin. “It’s nice to see everyone come together and support those who are observing.”

Rafi Rubenstein at Break the Fast
Photo/Mike Lovett

Rafi Rubenstein '22

Meanwhile, Rafi Rubenstein ’22, who is Jewish and hails from Longmeadow, Mass., also said he was happy to see so many of his peers join him in observing Yom Kippur.

“It’s a great event that brings everyone together and shows how many people are in this community and in this faith,” said Rubenstein. “Break the Fast shows the strength of this community to all come together and celebrate like this.”

Marshall Smith at Break the Fast
Photo/Mike Lovett

Marshall Smith ’21

Many other Break the Fast attendees echoed Rubenstein, Torelli and Suchin’s sentiments about Brandeis community members coming together.

Marshall Smith ’21 of Atlanta, Georgia said he identifies with the purpose of Yom Kippur and enjoyed attending Break the Fast with his friends. 

“To me, this celebration is about coming together, repenting for past sins and starting over,” Smith said. “It’s now a fresh start.”

Categories: General, Student Life

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