Passover

This page offers resources, insights, and practical tips for expanding the telling in engaging and family-friendly ways

The Passover Seder is the most-observed Jewish ritual, exceeding even participation on the High Holidays. Jews and non-Jews gather to tell the story of the Exodus and to share and create family memories. This is not just a Jewish ritual among many or Jewish story among many. This is a ritual that has shaped generations and a story that has become our national narrative and outreach. 

As the Haggadah, the text for the seders, declares: "Even if all of us were wise, and all of us were people of understanding, all of us were elders, and all of us were fully-versed in Torah, it would still be a mitzvah (duty and good deed) to tell of the exodus from Egypt. And everyone who expands upon the telling is surely to be praised!"

SECTIONS:

- GENERAL RESOURCES FOR ENHANCING YOUR PASSOVER
- CONNECTING PASSOVER TO MODERN SLAVERY
- ARTICLES BY RABBI DEBRA ON PASSOVER & MODERN SLAVERY
- ARTICLES ABOUT FREEING SLAVES ON PASSOVER
- PASSOVER GIFTS


GENERAL RESOURCES FOR ENHANCING YOUR PASSOVER:

WRITTEN DOWNLOADS

·    UPDATED! - Seder Solutions - 72 ideas for making your seders more meaningful and fun!

·   Making A Seder with Children

·   Four New Questions to add to your seder table discussion.

·   Tradition, Change, and Passover Wishes - a discussion of the interplay between tradition and change in the holiday.

·   The Insecurity of Freedom - a column by Rabbi Debra reprinted from The Menorah, a publication of Congregation B’nai Israel in Emerson, NJ

·   A Passover Quiz - Are you smarter than a Dalet/Hay-er?

·   Who Knows One? - an alternate version of this favorite song from the Haggadah, full of humor -- and Kabbalistic wisdom.

AUDIO & VIDEO RESOURCES

"How Cleaning for Passover Can Help You Live an Extraordinary Life:  The Five R's of Chametz (Leaven)- (This audio selection was edited from the live recording of a talk delivered as part of a Shabbat sermon. The original talk included about four additional minutes of a more personal address to a Bar Mitzvah boy, applying the “five r’s” to that rite of passage in general and to him and his family in particular. Thanks go to the deeply humble and impressively proactive Joshua Kaufman for inspiring this sermon! )  Listen to this talk on preparing for Passover:

"Making Passover More Meaningful" - Debra's WABC Radio appearance on the show "Religion on the Line."

Video Torah Talk - Debra was an online guest on "Rosner's Domain," a program put out by The Los Angeles Jewish Journal. Watch below the 9-minute segment as Debra discusses the parashah and values related to Passover.





CONNECTING PASSOVER TO MODERN SLAVERY:

Did you know that there are approximately 30 million slaves in the world today? In honor of Passover, the Festival of Freedom, Jews are banding together to do something to help.

NEW! - Passover Prep - A one-page handout to read before or during your Seder. One side describes the causes – and cures- for modern slavery. The reverse side suggests actions that you can take in ten hours, ten minutes, or even ten seconds to remember and help slaves this Passover.

UPDATED! – “Coupons” to place on your seder table  Choose the two-sided option on your printer, and you will have two double-sided, beautifully calligraphed coupons per page. Distribute coupons at your seder to encourage discussion and action about modern slavery.

UPDATED! - Confronting Slavery at the Seder: Discussion Starters, Activities, and Readings- by Rabbi Debra

UPDATED! - If You Are Hosting. . . A Guide for Seder Hosts on What To Do, Read, and Change at Your Seder Because There Are Still Slaves in the World Today

UPDATED! – Seder Starters – activities and readings curated from across the Internet to enhance your seder. Connect the plight of slaves today with the story of the Exodus and the text of the Haggadah.  Choose from many options and ideas, arranged in the order of the seder ritual.   

UPDATED!– Learn and teach about modern-day slavery. Download NEXT YEAR FREE!, curricula for Passover for every age – from kindergarteners through adults.

FAIR TRADE! – Serve fair trade, kosher-for-Passover chocolates. You can order online from The Jewish Fair Trade Project.


ARTICLES BY RABBI DEBRA ON PASSOVER & MODERN SLAVERY:

Chutzpah This Passover - How a rabbi met with the head of the World Bank – and how Jews can free slaves this Passover.

Do One Thing Different Making simple changes – in Your Seders and in life – can make all the difference.

If You Were A Slave: Empathy & Action This PesachDeploying dollars and imagination to refine our souls and bring healing to others.

For All We Are WorthHow do we calculate the value of a human being? What price will we pay to save a life?

See One Person, Be One Person - Amazing individuals – including children – who are making a difference in the fight against slavery. You can, too. 

Angels on the Path - Debra's column in the Congregation B'nai Israel Menorah newsletter about finding partners to free slaves.

Slavery Here and Now - published in The New Jersey Jewish Standard.

Upping the Ante - What happens when you commit to saving 18 slaves, and your child asks, “Why only 18?”  A column in the Congregation B'nai Israel Menorah newsletter.

Slavery and the Four Sons/Children of the Passover Seder - Imagine the four sons/children as four responses to human trafficking today. 


ARTICLES ABOUT FREEING SLAVES ON PASSOVER:

Put a Padlock on Your Seder Plate, in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Freeing the Slaves, Not an Easy Task, in The Philadelphia Exponent

Freeing the Slaves - from The New Jersey Jewish Standard.

Passover Project Seeks South Florida Participants - from The Sun Sentinel and Florida Jewish Journal

A Father’s Memory Is An Inspiration to Serve and to Smile - from The New Jersey Jewish News

Jews Combatting Modern Slavery and An Anti-Trafficking Bill That Stalls In the Senate - from The Los Angeles Jewish Journal

Talking About Liberation - from The New Jersey Jewish Standard

The Passover Project - in the Pascack Valley Press


PASSOVER GIFTS:

Our inspirational CD's from Debra and Reb Zalman make wonderful hostess gifts for the seder and all year long.

Click on the CD's for more information.

Fair Trade Kosher for Passover Chocolates & Other Gifts

Books on Modern Slavery and How to End It