Ask A Rabbi: Are There Jewish Prayers for Thanksgiving?

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By Rabbi Baruch HaLevi

PumpkinsI know there are traditional prayers for Hanukkah, but are there alternative prayers we can bring to our table to enrich this year’s Hanukkah/Thanksgiving feast?

There are many! The Psalms are always a good place to start. Here are some Psalms you might want to consider. Keep in mind that there are many different variations of these, so look online until you find a translation that speaks to you.

Psalm 118: Thanksgiving Day Prayer – God Is Good
Psalm 100: Thanksgiving Psalm – Praise
Psalm 111: Thanksgiving Psalm – Nourishment
Psalm 30: Thanksgiving – Give Thanks Forever
Psalm 28: Psalm for Thanksgiving – Let God Be Your Strength
Psalm 150: Thanksgiving Day Psalm – Every Soul Rejoice

Here are some additional prayers for Thanksgiving:

Thanksgiving Prayer by Rabbi Maralee Gordon
A Thanksgiving Prayer by Rabbi Naomi Levy
A Thanksgiving Prayer (author unknown)
We Pray For Children by Ina Hughs

Here are some Hanukkah prayers:

The Healing Light of Chanukah by Ariel Lee
First Light: An Energy-Aware Chanukah Celebration
New Blessings For Chanukah
Let My Voice Be A Hammer by Rabbi Rachel Greengrass
Chanukah Meditations

Ask A RabbiIn addition, here are a few “edgier” but compelling selections (I suggest you read them ahead of time to make sure they jive with your theological sensibilities):

Pray For Peace by Ellen Bass
Love is the New Religion by Brian Piergrossi
The Invitation by Oriah Mountaindreamer

Rabbi Baruch HaLevi

Rabbi Baruch HaLevi is the rabbi at Congregation Shirat Hayam, a Conservative synagogue in Swampscott.

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