A service beginns with
(Barkhu is said only to
beginn a community prayer.
In your personal private prayer you don`t say it.)
In the evening Service we have to say
at least the first passage (Dtn 6:4-9),
[= black Prayer Book
p. 161, transliteration p. 160]
because the torah commanded us,
to say the words of the Shma when we rise and when we lay down
- that means in
the mornings and in the evenings.
Also the last sentence of the last passage
tizkeru /Then you will remember, p. 165)
is said, because we shall daily
remember the exodus out of Egypt.
Bevore we quote the Shma
we say two prayers [= black Prayer Book p. 159-161],
the first praises God for having made the darkness and the night,
the second for giving us the tora.
It`s not necessary to say everthing in these prayers.
The important phrases are the last ones,
wich beginn with Barkhu (Blessed are you ...)
After we have said the shma, we again
say two prayers after the Shma,
the first proclaimes, that these word, that we just have said, had really been
they spoke about us and our tasks. It can`t be shortened (p. 164-167).
The second prayer after the Shma asks God to be with us during the night. Here
again the last phrase is the important one.
It`s usual, to have an
Amida in every offical Jewish
although the Amida in the evening is no substitute for a commanded sacrifice,
as the two other Amidas in the morning and the afternoon are.
the morning and the afternoon sacrifice, commanded us in the tora.
Important for the Amida are its themes.
So it`s not necessary to say exactly the
words, written in the prayerbook,
but you could formulate the themes of the Amida in your words.
This is not the usal practise, but there are some liberal and expecially
reconstructionist`s congregations in USA, who encourage people to do so.
Therefore you are allowed to shorten the service, by shortening the formulations
in the Amida or using other words. (But be careful, the people present should
feel at home in the service and they are used to the words, they normally say.)
As we came together to greet the
Shabbat, we should have some elements in the service, to greet the shabbat.
The liturgical beginning of the Shabbat is
Psalm 92 (p. 150-153). It`s not
necessary to say every verse, it could be shortened.
Usually people like to sing the song
Lekha Dodi, at least some parts of it. If this song is song, the last verse has
to be included. Here everybody turns to the door, to greet the coming Shabbat,
the special time.
The service should end with
Kaddish. Before Kaddish we say Alenu.
EVERYTHING IN THE SERVICE HAS ITS REASON. IT`S WORTH TO THINK ABOUT THE TEXTS
FOR FINDING THEIR REASONS. BEFORE LEAVING THINGS OUT, IT`S WORTH TO ASK, WHAT
THEY COULD MEAN.