Monday night we attended a very informal seder in the neighborhood in which most of the families were intermarried and/or the children of intermarriage. I was impressed with the Haggadah, “The 30-Minute Seder,” which cleverly packs in all the key seder components, including the third and fourth cups and opening the door for Elijah, BEFORE the meal.
I’ve only attended a handful of seders that extended beyond the meal; at virtually every seder I’ve been to, people begin trickling out after dessert has been served. For many years I wondered about the iconic lines like “Next year in Jerusalem,” since they never seemed to be part of my family Passover celebrations.
Tonight, Ellie and I are leading our extended family’s seder and trying out our homemade Haggadah, which was a lot of fun to put together. There is no second half to this seder; indeed, I’m a little worried that our relatives will complain it’s too long, since I kept all the major rituals and slipped in a few supplemental readings!
My quasi-Catholic husband Joe, who increasingly seems to pride himself on knowing more about Judaism than many of our Jewish friends and family members, has insisted on contributing a joke page, which we’ll read after The Four Children and before mine and Ellie’s re-telling of the Moses story. Here it is:
The Exodus, an alternative interpretation by Rabbi Hugh Bris:
And so it came to pass that Moses was again called to the royal palace.
Pharaoh: “Moses, so good to see you again! I know, I know, you’re wondering why I asked to you here. This, this is so hard for me. Well, it’s not the quality of the work, gods no! Those pyramids. Wow! They’ll still be standing in our grandkids’ time, mark my word….But, you know, the slowdown. Things are tight. The Phoenicians are cutting back, Babylonians too. Look, what I’m trying to say, Moses, is that I’m afraid I’m going to have to let your people go.”
Shabbat Shalom and Happy Passover!