A Husband and Wife on Rosh Hashana

A Husband and Wife on Rosh Hashana

The following is based on something I heard in a class by Mrs. Miriam Swerdlov:

This Rosh Hashana, your husband can go to an incredible shul where he experiences amazing and uplifting davening and has perfect focus.

But, none of that matters if he comes home and there’s no white tablecloth on the table, and the holiday candles haven’t been lit, and there’s no festive meal to eat.

Without the Jewish woman, no matter how spiritual the husband’s davening is, for that husband there is no Rosh Hashana.

That is just how important the contribution of the Jewish woman is.

So don’t go overboard. Nobody needs 10 desserts or stuffed figs (like I made one year, and nobody ate them. My family is still making fun of me for doing that!)

Just remember to take it easy, and do what you need to do, and keep smiling.

And remember that while it’s very important that your husband is davening the whole day in shul, the one who makes or breaks Rosh Hashana is you.


  1. beautiful thought!

  2. not sure how I feel about that.
    what about the wifes tefilos aswell? are they not as important? are the womans contributions only to do with the house and food?

  3. Tsiona, the wife’s tefilos are so important! But she doesn’t need a minyan or a beit kneset. She can daven while chopping veggies, while washing the floor, while setting the table, and her tefilot go right up to the kise hakavod. Also, just as a neshama needs a guf in order to fulfil its tafkid, the physical part of life, the home, the food, the happy environment, are necissary for the spiritual to thrive.

  4. I’d add the emphasis on “keep smiling”. Even if the white table cloth isn’t prisitinely ironed and the meal is more basic, if the wife is happy and feeling positive… THAT will make the husband’s Rosh Hashana! (And yours too!)

  5. Beautiful!!! This thought will really have an impact on our Rosh haShana iy”H! Thank you and a kesiva wechasima toiva to you and your precious family!

  6. Since most of the men I know go to Uman every year (no wife, no real home to come back to, and the festive meal, um…) I’m not sure this is true.
    Our role is important all year long, overall, because the woman’s strength is in the consistency she provides. It creates a feeling of stability and strength her whole family depends upon. Not just as a Rosh Hashana hostess.

    • interesting point! thx

    • Mina Gordon

      For over two decades, my husband would spend Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur in Tasmania, an hour’s flight from our home in Melbourne, while I stayed at home with the children. My husband was able to provide a real yomim noraim experience in a place that otherwise might not have had a minyan, confident in the knowledge that I was providing a real yomim noraim experienced for our young children at home. (Bigger children either joined my husband or went to the Rebbe (770) for Tishrei.)
      Part of that experience is the daavening with the kids on their level, hearing shofar,etc. and part is the special foods,clothing, and yomtov atmosphere.
      It’s a package deal.

  7. Thank you so much for this very inspiring idea. I still need it, even after 27 years of being married.

  8. Kesiva vchasima tova.

  9. Roberta Carasso

    Chana Jenny, I would like to thank you for introducing all of us to Laura Doyle’s book. I have tried out her ideas men and women friends and they work so well. Stay on your own page works for everyone. Letting people know you trust their decision is another treasure. There are more winners, but I will conclude by saying THANK YOU AND WISHING YOU AND ALL YOUR READERS A WONDERFUL NEW YEAR.


  10. I have very mixed feelings about this post. it’s all very well to comment on the atmosphere waiting for the husband to come home to: but all this can only happen in a home where the wife is valued and appreciated by her husband…. it is absolutely a joint effort! If the woman is the soul then the man is the body and neither can thrive without the care and attention of the other in this world…. So in order for a woman to be able to kindle the soul of the home with warmth and love so to must she be tended to by her husband: it is a cycle and not a linear process. And those women who manage without their husbands for myriads of reasons (including them being in uman!!) are heroines.

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