Students Experience Jewish Service During Passover


Creative Commons License

On Saturday April 20, a few of my peers and I attended a Jewish synagogue during one of the most holy Jewish holidays: Passover. While this was one of the most interesting experiences in my life, I will first start with a little background on the holiday of Passover itself. The very first Passover took place during the Exodus, or rather right before the exiting of the Jews from Egypt. At this time, God instructed the households had to sacrifice a lamb and put its blood over the door of their household if they wanted to save themselves from the tenth plague in which was every firstborn child of the house would be killed. As told by, “The holiday is ultimately a celebration of freedom, and the story of the exodus from Egypt is a powerful metaphor that is appreciated not only by Jews, but by people of other faiths as well.” Today Passover is celebrated by Jews all across the world, and in many different ways. The main event of this holiday is called Seder, which is a festive meal, during which the story of the exodus is retold. Also during the meal and for the rest of the week that follows, observants are unable to eat “leavened”, or risen, bread. This means bread with no yeast. Yeast is a symbol of sin. While my classmates and I participated in a meal with them after the service, it was not a Seder service.

Now, back to the Passover service itself. It was very different from the traditional Protestant morning service. First, the service was mostly in Hebrew, and there was a lot of “singing.” Second, the congregants hold the Torah in very high regard compared to what most Christians do for the Bible. One of the people who attended with me was Nathan Maggard, 11, He said, “It was amazing to see the symbolism of the Torah and how it represented the gift of Christ that is now apparent to us.” Overall it was a great experience that I would highly encourage all Christians to try at least once.