Jewish Holiday & Shabbat Prayers

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As on Shabbat, nearly all of the festivals include a special Musaf, or additional service, which also reiterates the spiritual theme of the day. For the three pilgrimage festivals, many congregations include the chanting of special religious poems, which further emphasize the agricultural or historical motif of the day.

And finally, every Shabbat and holiday (apart from Hanukkah and Purim) has its own special Kiddush, or blessing of sanctification over wine, and special additions to the Birkat Hamazon (grace after meals) to conclude festive meals.

Despite the seemingly chaotic nature of these additions and conclusions, there actually is a fairly predictable structure of prayers that serves to emphasize the festive nature of Shabbat and the Jewish holidays.

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