While once upon a time Israelis who did not view themselves as frum attended shul to hear shofar on Rosh Hashanah, today, it appears that a growing number of residents of Israel use the two day yomtov for hiking and taking outings R”L.
Jewish National Fund officials report at least 500,000 Israelis visited JNF parks over yomtov in addition to 300,000 reported visitors to nature reserves and other areas.
Proponents of making Sunday an official day of rest as is the case in the United States feel that having a ‘day off’ other than Shabbos would result in an increase in the number of people willing to attend shul and maintain a semblance of a traditional lifestyle for they would have another day to spend with the family.
Opponents to the plan from the religious sector fear that a Sunday off would result in a longer Friday work day and this would result in increased hardships for frum Yidden trying to get home for early winter Shabbos. They feel this would place an even heavier burden on soldiers trying to return home from their base. The opponents feels the move to a Sunday day of rest will result in increased chilul Shabbos.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)