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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rosh Hashana Hits Internet

NEW YORK -- For one 3-year-old, the Jewish New Year means learning ancient Hebrew rituals with a mouse -- in cyberspace.

God is just a click away for Congregation Emanu-El in Manhattan, one of the world's largest synagogues, which is broadcasting Rosh Hashana services on the Internet.

For Jews observing the year 5757 in dozens of countries, the soul-searching that marks the holiday means clicking to

"C'mon, c'mon! Faster, faster!" urges Alexandra Newton, her tiny hand clutching the "mouse" as religious images pop up on the screen.

This is high-tech spirituality. Even the 20 office computers have been blessed by a rabbi.

For 18 hours starting at sundown in Israel -- or noon in New York -- Jews worldwide listened to the service, accompanied by on-screen images of Jewish religious objects and texts. One box is marked "A Virtual Tour of the Temple."

The new style of worship began last year, when Temple Emanu-El installed a communications tower.

In April, the first complete religious service hit cyberspace, with about 225,000 people from 33 countries going on-line for the Passover "Cyber Seder."

The on-line services are financed by donations from synagogue members, who have given more than $100,000 so far to the project dubbed "Endow Your Web Site."