High Holy Days

High Holy Days 5780

Welcome to your High Holy Days 5780 Information Center!

Below you will find important links, frequently asked questions, and information on all of our High Holy Day services. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact our office at 703-437-7733.

May you be inscribed for a sweet new year!

Security Passes, Guests, and FAQs

This year, instead of tickets, all who wish to attend services must present security passes before entering our building. These passes ensure that we are aware of who is in our building at all times.

Security passes will be mailed to all families whose contact information is up to date in ShulCloud, and who have either created a monthly payment plan, or ShowClick Here to View Contact Information to make other arrangements.

If you would like to purchase security passes for guests who are not members of NVHC, please click here. If you are not a member of NVHC and would like to attend services, we would love to welcome you to our spiritual home. To purchase your security pass, click here.

We would not be able to have these services without the help of our awesome volunteers. Click the button below to sign up to greet people, help with traffic control, or be an usher during one or all of the High Holy Day services.

Like last year, we are thrilled to be able to livestream our High Holy Day services. Click the red button below to view our YouTube channel. The stream will begin approximately 5 minutes before the beginning of services. You will see a link that says “Live Now;” click that to view the stream. Note: streaming is only set up in the Sanctuary, so we are unable to stream the tot services.

All services are in the sanctuary unless otherwise stated.

Talmud of the High Holy Days

Join us for Talmud of the High Holy Days with Rabbi Holzman, Fridays September 6, 13, 20, 27, and October 4 from 8:00-9:15 am. In this class, we will study key tractates of Talmud and learn how the rabbis before us thought and felt about the High Holy Days. If you can’t make the class, we’ll also have workbooks with which you can follow along from home. (coming soon!)

Prayer Hebrew for the High Holy Days

This class will focus on reading and understanding the prayers and the prayer variations that are unique to the High Holy Days. We will look at key vocabulary words, the meaning and contact of the prayers, as well as practice reading in Hebrew. Prayers covered will include Avinu MalkeinuZokreinuUntaneh TokefKol Nidre, and Pitchui Li. (note: you should be familiar with the Hebrew alphabet and able to read Hebrew phonetically for this class).

We will meet Thursdays, September 5, 12, 19, and 26, from 6:00-7:00 pm. Registration is required; click here to register.


Each year, just before the High Holy Days, we prepare ourselves intellectually and spiritually for the coming of the New Year through Selichot worship and reflection. We examine our deeds of the past year, seeking forgiveness from God and contemplating teshuvah – repentance – to turn toward our best selves in the coming year. Join us for Selichot Havdalah and a Movie on Saturday, September 21 at 7:30 pm in the Multi-Purpose Room. We will watch Won’t You Be My Neighbor, share our thoughts in a clergy-led discussion, nosh on some dessert, and take part in a worship service. No tickets or security passes required.

Rosh Hashanah

We offer Erev (evening) and morning Rosh Hashanah services, as well as a morning Tot and Family Service, geared towards families with children up to the age of 11. All Rosh Hashanah services are at home – NVHC. Security passes are required for all services.

Erev Rosh Hashanah
Sunday, September 29
Rosh Hashanah
Monday, September 30
Evening Service, 8:00 pm Sunrise Service (lay-led), 7:30 am
Family Service, 9:00 am
Tot Service, 10:00 am (Multi-Purpose Room)
Adult Service, 11:00 am
Tashlich (“Casting off”) Service, 4:00 pm (Lake Fairfax Park)


Tashlich comes from the Hebrew word meaning “to cast,” referring to the intent to cast away our sins via this meaningful and ancient Jewish custom. It involves symbolically casting off the sins of the previous year by tossing pieces of bread or another food into a body of flowing water. Just as the water carries away the bits of bread, so too are sins symbolically carried away. In this way the participant hopes to start the New Year with a clean spiritual slate. Join us at Lake Fairfax Park on the afternoon of Rosh Hashanah, Monday, September 30, 2019 at 4:00 pm, for this wonderful ritual. Bring bread crumbs for casting, and then stay with the community to enjoy your own picnic!

Yom Kippur

We offer Kol Nidre adult and family services on Tuesday, October 8, and numerous services the entire day of Yom Kippur. Our morning Tot and Family Services are geared towards families with children up to the age of 11. All services are held at home – NVHC. Security passes are required for all services. We continue our daylong observance with an afternoon discussion and study on the themes of these Days of Awe, a time for deeper exploration and reflection. The day continues after the study session with our Yom Kippur afternoon, Yizkor, and Neilah services. No security passes are required for the Yizkor or Neilah services.

Kol Nidre
Tuesday, October 8, 2019
Yom Kippur
Wednesday, October 9, 2019
Family Service, 6:30 pm Sunrise Service (lay-led), 7:30 am
Adult Service, 8:00 pm Family Service, 9:00 am
Tot Service, 10:00 am (Multi-Purpose Room)
Adult Service, 11:00 am
Afternoon Discussion & Study, 1:30 pm (Multi-Purpose Room)
Afternoon Service, 3:30 pm
Yizkor (Memorial) Service, 5:00 pm
Neilah (Closing) Service, 6:00 pm

Elul 5780

The High Holy Days help us strengthen our relationships, renew our souls, review our ethics, find challenge, encounter enlightenment, enjoy comfort and joy, and restart our spiritual lives. This is why we call these 10 days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur the Yamim Nora’im, the Days of Awe. We take 10 days each year to review our souls, to ask ourselves who we want to be and to create new lives and new worlds.

Each Shabbat in the month of Elul, join our clergy for Friday night services as we explore, through writing, the themes of Elul. Each week, we will have time during services for everyone to reflect upon a specific theme and write our own personal 6-word prayers. In each weekly email, we will share the theme for the upcoming Shabbat, as well as sharing them here. We hope you will join us as we begin to spiritually ready ourselves for the High Holy Days.

  • August 30: For an unexpected gift from the last year.
  • September 6: To release yourself from unwarranted guilt.
  • September 13: For what you need most in order to close this year.
  • September 20: For something you would want to welcome into your life this new year.
  • September 27: For change and renewal.