From The Rabbi’s Study… March 26, 2021/13 Nisan 5781
Shabbat HaGadol “The Great Shabbat” Torah: Tzav(Leviticus 6:1-8:36)
The Sabbath preceding the festival of Passover is designated as the Great Shabbat (Shabbat HaGadol) in the commemoration of the great miracle that occurred on the Sabbath preceding the exodus from Egypt. It is based on the tradition that when G-d ordered the Israelites to prepare the lamb on the tenth of Nisan for the paschal offering, the Egyptians were paralyzed with fear and could not prevent them from doing so, even though the lamb was an Egyptian deity.
The Haftarah is taken from the Book of Malachi, who is preaching to a despondent generation. The Temple has now been rebuilt, but Malachi is not satisfied with the faith of the Israelites. Not until the people reach a more mature state of religiosity can they expect to have complete redemption. Only then will Elijah the prophet come and announce the beginning of the Messianic ,Era.
Because Elijah was traditionally regarded as the advanced messenger who would appear at Passover time and announce the dawn of a new era, this Haftarah, with its Elijah reference, was chosen to be read on the Sabbath immediately preceding Passover. Elijah has a special kiddush at the seder table.
Zoom app will be used for the First Seder so we can join together via computer for a short seder. The Seder will start at 5pm on Saturday night, March 27/14 Nisan and the seder will be unique.
It is rare that Pesach falls on the Sabbath. The Festival of Passover this year will NOT have Havdalah (the service that ends Shabbat/sacred time from the mundane) because the celebration of Shabbat and our Exodus of Freedom from Slavery in Egypt are both extraordinary moments for the Jewish people to celebration. Since the Pandemic, Jews around the world are rising to the challenges to keep Judaism alive and vibrant for multi-generational families, individuals, and the diversity of Jews and their observances.
I have seen over the last year how the loss of humanity reaches into all our Nashamot/souls and our being. We need that human touch, the togetherness one feels when praying with their brethren, learning in school,going to work, and the struggle to make our eyes smile for someone when wearing our masks. We also miss being with our loved ones, and friends during holiday celebrations.
Passover was a moment of trepidation for the Israelite slaves. They did not know where Moses was leading them, but they knew what they were leaving behind. Eventually, we too will leave the Pandemic behind, and we too will struggle to get back to our freedoms. We are Jews and Jews know how to adapt to all circumstances. Jews have an unique way of once again rising to all challenges and to survive.
Please know you may have your families join our Zoom Seder and Shabbat Services!
Items and Information for Passover;
Zeroah=Lamb’s Shank (Symbolizing the sacrificed lamb, the blood of which was put on the doorpost. Sacrificed lambs were also offered at the Temple in Jerusalem.)
Maror = Bitter Herbs (Horseradish) Maror means bitter in Hebrew. It symbolizes the harsh treatment of slavery.
Haroset = A mixture of nuts, apples, and wine chopped into a paste or relish. Symbolizing the mortar the Hebrews used in Egypt.
Baytzah = Roasted/burnt hard boiled egg. Symbolizing new life.
Three matzot covered the middle will be broken to use for the Afikomen.
Haggadah is Hebrew meaning to tell. It is the story Exodus/ the First Passover that we tell to each generation.
4 questions with answers
Dayenu …3 verses
The Passover Symbols …Pesach (lamb bone or beet), Matzah,Maror
Second cup of wine
Blessings for matzah
Eating the sandwich of matzah and maror
Eat your meal.
*open the door while holding the Elijah cup to give the prophet a sip. He will bring peace to the world and the Messiah!
Rabbi Helene Ainbinder, Michael and the family would like to wish everyone A Zissen Pesach/ A Chag Pesach Sameach! A Happy Passover!