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Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives: Rabbi Hannah Spiro on 24 September 2018 Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives: Rabbi Hannah Spiro on 24 September 2018 2018-09-25 23:58:35 The Opening Prayer given in the U.S. House of Representatives on 24 September 2018. Text the Open Siddur Project United States Congressional Record United States Congressional Record Hannah Spiro United States Congressional Record Sukkot United States of America Opening Prayers for Legislative Bodies welcoming תחינות teḥinot 21st century C.E. 58th century A.M. English vernacular prayer House of Representatives 115th Congress Prayers of Guest Chaplains United States Immigration Policy hospitality hakhnasat orḥim

Guest Chaplain: Rabbi Hannah Spiro, Hill Havurah, Washington, DC
Date of Prayer: 09/24/2018

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Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

we thank You for the Jewish festival of Sukkot,
which begins today,
and for Your commandment
to build temporary structures,
to eat and sleep in them
under the stars,
and to welcome in guests––
honored guests,
guests in need.
You teach us that these are one and the same.

Your festival teaches us
to come to terms with impermanence––
of these temporary structures,
our actual homes,
our wealth,
our social standing,
and even our lives.
When we remember,
as Ecclesiastes teaches,
that we came from dust
and will return to it,[1] Cf. Ecclesiastes 3:20 
we can’t possibly feel justified
in holding onto our resources
with a clenched fist.
You move us
to open our hands
and homes
in generosity,
and justice.

May the Sukkot season
and the beauty of changing autumn leaves
inspire each one of us
to welcome,
to serve, and,
for this brief time we are allotted,
to generously live.


115th Congress, 2nd Session
Issue: Vol. 164, No. 157 — Daily Edition (September 24, 2018)




1 Cf. Ecclesiastes 3:20


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