How do you make the second seder distinctive? Readers offer a variety of suggestions.
You sit down at the seder table, start the holiday meal with Kiddush, then déjà vu hits you: didn’t we do this last night?
For many people, the second seder — Yom Tov Sheni Shel Galiuot, which takes place only in the diaspora — is a challenge. Going through the same readings and rituals seems repetitive. Those who already asked “why is this night different from all other nights?” strain to make the second seder different from the first.
‘I never missed a seder,’ says survivor who risked his life to join family at a seder in the doomed Jewish quarter.
Near the start of the seders I conduct, mostly in former communist countries, I usually cite, then refute, the statement by Ahad Ha’am, the early Zionist leader, that “More than Israel has kept the Sabbath, the Sabbath has kept Israel.”
The seder, I say, has preserved the Jewish people; most are not shomer Shabbat; most go to a seder, even it involves a sacrifice.
In a trend that has been growing in recent decades, the publishing industry – which has brought printing into everyone’s hands and allowed publishers to gear their products to particular segments of the market – now offers Haggadahs and related Pesach books that appeal on the whole, to specific parts of the Jewish community.
A former student of Rabbi David Silber at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education offered the rabbi a suggestion a few years ago — he should do his own Haggadah, based on the Passover-based classes and lectures he had given for three decades.
The rabbi’s first answer was “no.”
“I’ve never written anything in my life,” he explains. “I teach. I speak. I’ve never written — maybe two or three articles.”
Keeping the kids entertained well past their bedtimes at the Passover seder is no simple task. While you were busy scouring the floors and cleaning out the cupboards, The Jewish Week scoured the Internet for affordable gifts that will keep the tots focused on the story of the Exodus — without leaving you wistfully planning your own. Order some extras — you just may want to “borrow” a few of these masks, finger puppets, and punching bags, too. After all, who says that fun at the seder is just for the kids?
This Passover, add a little color to
the seder meal with a tuber or two.
Most people already have one root vegetable — horseradish, to denote maror — on their seder table. But for kosher cooks looking for a little more excitement over the weeklong holiday, there should be a few more colorful tubers at the meal.
As April nears every year, it is not only accountants who find themselves in an annual crunch. The month between Purim and Passover is the busiest period of the year for those who work in the ever-growing kosher wine industry. Wine producers and importers rush to get their new wines to market, and many wine merchants will sell more kosher wine during this four-week period than they sell in the other 48 weeks of the year combined.
Proponents of handmade matzah hope to reclaim a mostly lost practice.
Special To The Jewish Week
Every spring, after she finishes scrubbing and scraping the kitchen for Passover, Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder can’t help but rejoice. But for her, the celebration isn’t merely a private utterance of gratitude, but a full-blown party: an annual matzah-baking bash, which includes a dozen or so friends and their children kneading and rolling and pricking and baking — and a fair amount of nibbling too.