Passover is quickly approaching; the first night falls on Wednesday, April 8th. And this year, the holiday comes during an extraordinary time.
The central commandment of Passover—retelling the story of the Exodus–asks that we consider ourselves as if we, too, had journeyed from narrowness to openness and from oppression to liberation.
This year, more than any in recent memory, that narrative rings true. We are currently in a narrow place; and, for that very reason, we must take the opportunity to make this year’s holiday one of engagement, connection, and celebration.
In accordance with recent guidelines from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association, we urge our community to restrict in-person seders to household members AND open up our seders to connect virtually with loved ones near and far.
Below, you’ll find articles, classes, videos, and links to help you prepare for Passover 2020:
I want to host a seder. How do I plan for that?
Wonderful! If you’d like to try online hosting a seder this year, there are resources available to help you plan (see below).
While you’re planning your seder, please consider the holy mitzvah of welcoming others to your virtual table: Sign up here if you’re able to open your seder to members of our community.
I want to be hosted. How do I find a virtual seder to attend?
- Be on the lookout for an email later this week that will allow you to sign up to attend AARC members’ online seders.
- Sign up in advance to join Jewish Women International’s Virtual Seder on Thursday, April 9 at 8 pm EDT.
- Havaya (Reconstructing Judaism’s summer camp) is hosting a one-hour Virtual Family Seder on Thursday, April 9 at 7 pm EDT; sign up here to register.
- Join the Haggadot.com team, journalist Esther Kustanowitz, and other special guests for an everyone-welcome, fifth ‘night’ Virtual Seder on Sunday, April 12 at 2 pm EDT (join via Zoom or Facebook livestream).
How do I plan my own virtual seder?
- Alma.com has a fantastically comprehensive guide for putting together a collaborative, meaningful seder — even when the guests are physically far away.
- Watch the video ‘The Art of Virtually Gathering: Passover 2020.’
- Attend a free online class this Thursday April 2 on ‘Practical Pesach Seder Ideas and Suggestions in Response to Corona’ (you’ll need to register in advance).
- From OneTable, myriad resources for Passover 2020, including a Solo Seder Guide, Passover Recipe Guide, Passover Playlist, and links to a curated selection of haggadot.
Which haggadot should I use?
- Reconstructing Judaism has made its classic haggadah, ‘A Night of Questions,’ available for free downloading
- Haggadot.com allows you to create and download your own personalized haggadah, or choose from hundreds of different themed haggadot created by Jews around the world.
- There are many fantastic haggadot available for free downloading, including Reform Judaism’s Haggadah; the Velveteen Rabbi’s Haggadah, available as both a PDF and a slideshow; the Queer Liberation Haggadah; and the 5 Legged Seder Table ‘Haggadah’, a creative workbook designed to help readers engage with the themes of the holiday.
….And consider these of-the-moment additions:
- A supplement to the Four Questions from Repair the World
- A Passover Prayer in the Age of Coronavirus from American Jewish Committee
- All the classic melodies in a Passover seder available on Youtube
How do I plan a kid-friendly seder?
- AARC member Carol Levin has generously made her delightful Haggadah Regatta into a PDF for anyone to use.
- Check out Reform Judaism’s many family-friendly Passover resources, including crafts, coloring pages, fun quizzes, 8 great haggadot for young people, a chocolate seder (!), and model seders for kids of all ages.
How do I prepare my home for Passover?
- Try making your own matzah at home with this delightful video from Rabbi Nathan Martin.
- From MyJewishLearning, How to Cook for Passover During the Coronavirus Crisis, including resources, online shopping tips, and recipes
- If you have halachic questions around cleaning for Passover, disposing of chametz, and buying kosher-for Passover products, email Rabbi Ora with your questions.
How do I spiritually prepare for Passover?
- Attend a free online class next Monday April 6, ‘Soulful Passover Preparation’ (you’ll need to register in advance).
- Explore some of the articles in this Passover 2020 reader from Uri Le’Tzedek.
Blessings for healthy, joyful, and connected zman cheruteinu (season of our liberation),