What are the correct Jewish festival dates for 2019?
According to the Sinai Torah the new moon for the 1st month of the Jewish Year is to be physically sighted over Jerusalem and the concurrent search for Aviv must be equally successful. If these two factors are resolved we can set the dates for festival observance at their anticipated scheduled time. Please remember that some of these forecast festivals will occur only according to new moon sightings. Any future variation of dates will be announced where and when applicable.
There has been much discussion and anger displayed amongst global Messianic assemblies over the search/discovery of aviv to determine the start of this New Year. With regret, the same identical issues and conflicts that were raised in 2016 have now been repeated in 2019. As you all are very much aware, the IMCF does not follow the artificially created modern Jewish calendar for very obvious reasons. However, the Israeli Karaites have determined that barley was NOT aviv prior to the March 8 new moon and they therefore called for an “Adar Bet” (choosing April 7 this year as New Year Day).
The American Karaites (and others) were volatile as they claimed aviv located and settled for March 8/9 as the New Year. This would mean that the “Yeshua Seder” celebration would fall on the evening of March 21.
If we choose to follow the advice of the Israeli authorities, then the Lord's Seder “celebration” (as one way of expressing the ritual) would fall on the evening of April 19 – the Passover falling on April 20.
I have made a unilateral decision, due to the conflict – as I did back in 2016 – for IMCF congregations to follow the Israeli Karaite authorities in this matter. However, I have shared the American view for any here who (in their freedom of choice) would prefer to observe their dating arrangement.
The seven day festival of unleavened bread (Israeli Karaites) occurs sundown April 20 through to sundown April 27.
Following M. Rood, Shavuot will fall Sunday 16 June.
Yom Teruah (or Rosh HaShanah) begins sundown September 29 until sundown September 30 -- IF the New Moon is seen on the 29th).
Yom Kippur falls 9 October (beginning the evening prior)
Sukkot -- otherwise known as The Festival of Tabernacles -- lasts for seven days with the first day declared an annual Sabbath: starts sundown 13/10 until sundown 14/10.
The Last Great Day is separate from Sukkot. It falls 21/10 (beginning the evening prior).
One last word of advice, if I may borrow from another Messianic website, “There is no reason to worry whether they have not chosen the right calendar or are observing feasts on the wrong days when there is no undisputed authority today to tell us the right calendar reckoning and end all the dispute we now see... God judges on the heart, not by perfection of execution. Certainly whatever calendar you are convicted to go by, right or wrong, will not change God's view of you as righteous (assuming you do not judge or attack those who disagree with your choice!).”
This information is provided for those of our IMCF Student Body and IMCF members (along with our FB Associate Members) who continue to observe the annual sabbaths and festivals of Israel, as enumerated in Leviticus 23.
Les Aron Gosling