I just came across a fascinating video, about four and a half minutes, about a golden bell that hung at the bottom of the Kohen Gadol's (High Priest) robe. Click here to see it. Good to watch before Yom Kippur.
Otherwise, take a few minutes before the holiday to check out these websites, and maybe print off something that looks interesting.
Aish.com - Yom Kippur
Chabad.org - Yom Kippur
And something else I found for the mothers out there who won't be making it to synagogue (like me!):
Not going to be spending much time, or any time at all in shul this Yom Kippur? A bit disappointed to be spending the most lofty day of the year stuck at home with young kids breaking up fights, changing diapers, and passing out bamba?
Listen to this…
The great Rabbi Elya Lopian zts”l taught that while the rest of the Jewish people is in shul praying, we mothers of young children should not feel the slightest bit disappointed that we spend this day focused on physical tasks rather than in the elevated atmosphere of the synagogue.
Rabbi Lopian taught: “Women who are at home during the High Holidays, busy caring for their children, don’t need the atmosphere and all of the prayers that are said in synagogue, since their prayers rise upward through a pipeline that goes directly to the Throne of Glory. And with the few words they’re able to daven, they are brought as close to the Throne of Glory as all the people who are standing for long hours, begging and pleading.” (Translated from Avodas HaTefillah V’Hamussar b’Mishnasah shel Kelm)
If you are a mother of young children, and dedicate your holiday to caring for them and your family’s needs, then the few minutes of prayer you say on your living room sofa are as valuable in Heaven as a rabbi’s 3-hour Amida in synagogue.
And remember: if you feel like your children are getting in the way of your serving Hashem this Yom Kippur…
Rabbi Brezak teaches: “Children don’t get in the way, they ARE the way.”
And let’s finish off with a story I just received from JewishMOM Chaya Cohen:
There once was a king who made a ceremony in honor of his birthday.
All day, he sat on his throne receiving his citizens’ well wishes. Each was rewarded for his or her visit in accordance with the king’s respect for that subject.
In the line stood the nanny of the prince, the king’s son.
When her turn came, everyone waited to hear what reward she would receive, as the king surely valued her role immensely.
But when the nanny came before the king, before she could speak, the king said to her: “If you are here, WHO is watching my son?!?”
I have a friend, a mother of 9, who shares this story every Yom Kippur as she watches her children from the neighborhood park bench. She says, “when my turn in judgment comes this Yom Kippur, all I know is I will be able to say that I spent this holy day watching Your children.”
Gemar Chatima Tova, JewishMOM!