Sukkot is for Everyone
If there's something in Judaism that is specifically for everyone, Sukkot would be it. All manner of people come together on Sukkot, serving as a reminder that it takes all kinds of people to build and maintain a thriving Jewish community.
There is an old European custom of lighting two memorial candles on Yom Kippur - one for the living and one for the dead. A selection of contemporary poems can help us reflect on our own memories as both honoring those who have died as well as serving as living reminders of the lessons they have to teach us and those who will come after.
Forgiveness is hard, and it begins with truth. In order to truly forgive, we must confront the truth of what happened to us; and in order to reconcile with those who have harmed us, we must face this truth together with them. It's a difficult process, but the example of a local advocate on restorative justice--who follows the same path as the prophet Jonah--can inspire us to take the first heavy steps toward forgiveness.
“To be effective, the preacher's message must be alive; it must alarm, arouse, challenge; it must be God's present voice to a particular people.”