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Celebrating Passover with traditional meal

(April 3, 2015) Passover, a holiday with roots in the Exodus from Egypt led by Moses, is a two-day celebration beginning tonight with the Seder meal and continuing tomorrow, where observations can differ somewhat.

“It’s one holiday all Jews observe in some way,” Rabbi Susan Warshaw of Temple Bat Yam said. “It [brings] people together as Jews.”

The Seder meal is comprised of food and wine consumed symbolically, but can be more intellectual or fun “depending on the number of kids you have there,” Warshaw said.

“We eat bitter herbs to remind us of the tears of the slaves, shank bone to remind us of the lamb’s blood used to mark the doors and charcoset, an apple, honey and cinnamon mixture that resembles the mortar put between the bricks, which was the slaves’ labor and a roasted egg to remind us of spring” she said.

Rabbi Noam Cohen of Chabad Ocean City, said holiday starts with services at 6:30 p.m., with the meal taking place closer to 8 p.m.

“We’ll drink four cups of wine, but that’s not something we want to do all at once. We drink a cup of wine, read Haggadah, eat Matzo and so on,” Cohen said.

“When God met Abraham he said he wanted to give Israel to him, but he needed to give him the Bible first. Abraham needed to understand the Bible and be humble,” Cohen said, which led to the enslavement of the 12 tribes of Israel. Moses was sent to lead Jews to Israel after more than 200 years as slaves.

After 50 days, the holiday of Shavuot or the Pentecost is celebrated recognizing the delivery of the Torah to the nation of Israel assembled at Mount Sinai.

Both Temple Bat Yam and Chabad Ocean City are hosting Seder meals, but space was limited and both are sold out.

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