We ask, “Why is tonight different from all other nights?”
Mah nishtanah halailah hazeh mikol haleilot?
Passover is about uniting as one and overcoming a treacherous journey through unfamiliar land, while persevering with strength and faith. It celebrates The Exodus of the Jewish people escaping freedom from slavery and the 10 plagues which struck down their oppressors. The Jews were protected from these plagues and their homes were “Passed Over” by having faith and following the commandments of Moses.
This Passover is not cancelled. It is a time for us to reflect. Why is this Passover different from all other Passovers?
Passover during the coronavirus is meaningful today in a unique and important way because it stems from the moral of the Passover story to come together as a people, united as one, with strength and perseverance to fight this coronavirus plague so that it may “Passover” all of us. That is my wish for all of you.
May we stand strong, united as one and have faith that this will Passover soon.
This Jewish holiday is usually filled with a full house of family and friends with a lengthy Seder recalling the story of Moses and the Israelites. This year, while we might be alone physical sense of the word, I know by following the law, next year will be different. Next year, we will not be enslaved alone in our homes and able to celebrate Passover with family and friends physically and spiritually.
This year we must come together and remember what is important in our lives. We must celebrate the people who matter the most in our lives. We must take notice of the good and bad by what and whom we take for granted – big and small.
By coming together by staying apart we will survive this journey and come out stronger on the other side with so much more to celebrate in the years ahead.
Wishing all those who celebrate a happy and very healthy Passover.
This year, I think we could all add this supplement to the Hagaddah for our Seders.
From the AJC for Passover 2020.
A Seder Responsive Reading in the Age of Coronavirus
As we fill our four cups of wine, we pray for a time when our cups will yet again be overflowing.
As we wash our hands, we affirm our role in protecting ourselves and others.
As we dip in salt water, we cry the tears of a planet besieged.
As we break the matzah, we long to be made whole.
As we ask the four questions, we search for the answers that elude us.
As we remember the ten plagues, we contemplate our own.
As we imagine our own redemption from Egypt, we aspire to be free.
As we sing Dayenu, we beseech, may our efforts to combat this pandemic be enough.
As we eat the matzah, we contemplate our impoverished state.
As we consume the bitter herbs, we empathize with another’s pain.
As we enjoy the haroset, we remember the sweetness which awaits us.
As we search for the afikomen, we pray to be connected to our missing pieces.
As we welcome Elijah, we pray for redemption.
As we sing songs of praise, we remain grateful for all of God’
Stay safe, stay well and be good to one another.
**Stay snarky my friends!**