Let all who are hungry come and eat.
These words stand the test of time because of the significance we seek to find in them.Year after year they remain unchanged; yet each year’s meaning feels different from the one before. What strikes me differently today than past years? The magnitude of the word ‘all.’
In 2014, U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky wrote in an essay: “The Haggadah tells us that we should invite all who are in need to share the hope of Passover. Our faith asks us to take action to help the oppressed, so that all may enjoy the blessings of freedom.”
As we gather around the Pesah table to reflect on and celebrate our collective journey to freedom, let us think about all those living in the grips of persecution. As drops of wine fall to our plates, let us remember all those who fall victim to today’s plagues of hatred, bigotry, indifference, violence, and war. And as we leave our doors open to Elijah, let us awaken the true meaning of opening our doors, our hearts, and our minds to all.
Under the light of Passover, with its profound meaning steeped in our journey from oppression to liberation, I invite each of you to embody courage. Like those who overcame before us–the courage to stand for security, freedom, prosperity, and peace for all.
It seems only appropriate that I end with words borrowed from the source I started with, Ha Lachma Anya, The Story of the Matzah: This year we are still slaves–Next year, free people.
Shabbat Shalom, and Hag Pesah Sameah to all,