Engage, Connect, Gather: Passover 2019


We are thinking about new ways to engage, connect and emphasize inclusion around the Passover holiday. Below are highlights of three new and original Passover-specific initiatives to consider joining, as well as several resources to peruse as you prepare your Seder this year.

Wishing you a happy and healthy Passover,

The Board and Staff of The Covenant Foundation

A Passover Holiday Headset

FOCUS: For the past four years, Pomegranate Prize recipient Leah Kahn, Senior Jewish Educator at UC-Berkeley’s Hillel, has led a unique Yoga Passover Seder for students on campus. Together, they experience the entire Haggadah, weaving in yoga practices and meditation to connect with major concepts of the holiday. “Students have told me that this Seder was the first time they ever derived deep meaning from the holiday,” Kahn shared. Learn more about Leah’s work here, and check out UC-Berkeley’s Hillel Passover offerings, including five different Seder options, here.

GATHER: Hosting a Seder can be overwhelming. That’s where #friendSeder comes in. This new initiative from The Well is many things: A website with tips on hosting your first Seder, a Hagaddah ready for you to print and use around your table, links to lots of other resources for making this #friendSeder a night to remember, live (and recorded) webinars all about how to host a #friendSeder, the full support of the #friendSeder and The Well team, and, of course, the hashtag, #friendSeder, to make sure your #friendSeder is counted amongst the countless others that will take place around the country. Sign up at friendSeder.com.

ENLIGHTEN: Charleston. Pittsburgh. Christchurch. In the all too recent past, we’ve witnessed an ongoing story of violence against innocent people praying and gathering together. And after each attack, we often feel helpless. But 2 for Seder is trying to change that, this Passover, by asking you to invite two non-Jewish people who have never attended before, to your Passover Seder. The hope is that by learning in community, and reaching out to those who have different traditions from our own, we can begin to celebrate our differences rather than allow them to tear us apart. 2 for Seder is held in memory of Joyce Fienberg, who was murdered at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA. Welcoming guests of a variety of backgrounds was something Joyce did for every holiday dinner. Visit the 2 for Seder website, click on “Participate” and you will receive a 2 for Seder Information Kit to support this special Seder. Small steps make a big difference.

ENHANCE: Three unique Hagaddah companions, which we hope will supplement your Seder with insight and joy this year:

  • The Interactive Seder Experience from Pardes- a collection of Seder activities to ensure that participants of all ages will find renewed delight, novel questions and joyful engagement at the Pesach Seder, and the Pardes Companion to the Haggadah, a 20-page booklet with essays written by Pardes faculty on each of the sections of the Seder.
  • The new Kveller Hagaddah, for “curious kids and their grown-ups.” Designed to guide families through an epic journey from slavery to freedom, this Hagaddah “goes deep into Jewish traditions in a kid-friendly way, but without overlooking the dramatic tensions of the Passover story.” With commentaries from Ruby Namdar, Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg, Rabbi Sari Laufer, Rabbi Shais Rishon and Rabbi Ruti Regan, it also features insights from renowned memory researchers, to help Seder guests understand how memory works and the connections between memory and food.
  • Simple Suggestions for the Seder, by artist Jessica Tamar Deutsch. After studying at Pardes and Midreshet Harova, Jessica came back to the States to work on her varied and vibrant art portfolio, and weave Jewish life into her work. From line drawings, to watercolors, to gorgeous illustrations of life in Israel, to conversation starters and encouraging prompts to ask your Seder guests, Jessica’s body of work is sure to inspire and delight you.
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