You may be wondering, where can I take my damaged siddur (prayer book) and other sacred documents?

What to Do with Sacred Texts Damaged in the Flood

The recent weather and flooding have had myriad consequences and repercussions. One concern is what to do with damaged prayer books and other religious sacred texts?

Geniza, meaning reserved or hidden in Hebrew, is a place to store sacred texts and other documents after they are damaged and before they are buried in a Jewish cemetery.

You may be wondering, where can I take my damaged siddur (prayer book) and other sacred documents? And, what should be saved for burial?

If you have any sacred texts needing to be buried, please bring them to the following organizations who have graciously volunteered to serve as a geniza until these items can be buried. We have a few simple instructions to make the process easier: Ideally, please try to dry out the materials.  If still wet, they MUST be in HEAVY trash bags, and not cartons. If dry, please put them in cartons that can be lifted by you – not wheeled on a cart, but lifted.  That will ensure that our volunteers can lift them safely when it is time to transport them to the cemetery.

  • Congregation Har HaShem – Wednesday-Friday 10 am – 3 pm; Sunday 9 am – 11:00 am
  • Congregation Nevei Kodesh – Monday-Thursday 9:30 am – 4:30 pm, Friday 9:30 am – 3:00 pm
  • Chabad at the University of Colorado – during regular business hours; please drop off near the coat racks left of the entrance

Here is a definition of items that may help you when determining what to submit:

  • Torah scrolls, their mantles and sashes; tefillin, their straps, covers and bags; mezuzah scrolls, wrappings and cases; a parochet (cloth ark covering) and bima (Torah reading table) cover; tzitzit or tallit fringes; Torah books, their covers, dust jackets, slip covers or other parts.
  • Materials containing: (a) G‑d’s name, (b) three consecutive words of a biblical verse, when written on one line with the intent to quote the verse, or (c) other written or printed Torah ideas or laws. (From

We will be posting a subsequent article in the BJN when we know the date when the community will be going to the cemetery to bury these items.

If you have specific questions or want to help transport these items from the geniza to the cemetery, please contact Cynthia and Amy at


About Amy Atkins

Check Also

“It Started With Words” – Holocaust Survivors Give Stunning Testimonies To Mark Holocaust Remembrance Day

Before local anti-Jewish laws were enacted, before neighborhood shops and synagogues were destroyed, and before Jews were forced into ghettos, cattle cars, and camps, words were used to stoke the fires of hate. #ItStartedWithWords is a digital, Holocaust education campaign posting weekly videos of survivors from around the world reflecting on those moments that led up to the Holocaust – a period of time when they could not have predicted the ease with which their long-time neighbors, teachers, classmates, and colleagues would turn on them, transitioning from words of hate to acts of violence.

Passover 2021 – In a Nutshell – When Erev Pesach is Shabbat

Approximately once every nine years, Passover begins on Saturday night. This means that erev Pesach, the day before Passover 2021, coincides with Shabbat, bringing with it a number of unique laws and guidelines.