Passover, the Biblically-ordained Festival of Freedom, will be observed by Jews the world over starting on Monday evening and concluding at nightfall, April 2. Those interested can observe the festival at the traditional Jewish Passover Seder at 6:30 p.m. on Monday in the Main Post Chapel’s activities room. The suggested donation for the Seder is $15. Call 533.4748 for reservations.
The essence of the celebration is an elaborate ritual built around a specially prepared meal held on the first two nights of the holiday. The meal is called “Seder,” a Hebrew word meaning “order.” This refers to the order of the various elements of the worship service in which participants partake of various symbolic foods: Matzah (unleavened bread); Karpas (seasonal greens dipped in salt water); Charoses (a mixture of chopped apples, nuts, raisins, wine and cinnamon); and Maror (bitter herbs, usually horseradish).
The drama of the story of Passover unfolds in a special book, the “Hagaddah,” the “narration,” and refers to the story of the Jews’ enslavement in Egypt at the hands of the Pharaoh, and their subsequent redemption under the leadership of Moses.
The principle idea of the observance is that each person is to consider himself a slave who experiences freedom for the first time. The process involves the whole Family. The drama of the occasion teaches the lesson that freedom must never be taken for granted, and that everyone has the responsibility to see that the blessings of freedom are extended to all human beings.