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Statement of Principles:

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Liberatory Passover Haggadah from Jewish Voice for Peace

JVL Introduction

The festival of passover, pesach, retells the story of the liberation of the liberation of the Children of Israel from slavery in ancient Egypt – and by extension to the liberation of everyone, everywhere. It begins on Friday 30th March this year.

At the height of the civil rights movement in the States, freedom seders became popular as blacks and Jews gathered to share their stories. More recently they have come to embrace the Palestinian struggle for justice and recognition.

We link here to the retelling of the story in a Haggadah prepared by the Rabbinical Council of Jewish Voice for Peace.

Download and print Jewish Voice for Peace’s free Passover Haggadah.

 

Your Child Will Ask
Rabbi Brant Rosen

Your child will ask
why do we observe this festival?

And you will answer
it is because of what God did for us
when we were set free from the land of Egypt.

Your child will ask
were we set free from the land of Egypt
that we might hold tightly
to the pain of our enslavementwith a mighty hand?

And you will answer
we were set free from Egypt
that we might release our pain
by reaching with an outstretched arm
to all who struggle for freedom.

Your child will ask
were we set free from the land of Egypt
because we are God’s chosen people?

And you will answer
we were set free from the land of Egypt
so that we will finally come to learn
all who are oppressed
are God’s chosen.

Your child will ask
were we set free from the land of Egypt
that we might conquer and settle
a land inhabited by others?

And you will answer
we were set free from the land of Egypt
that we might open wide the doors
to proclaim:

Let all who are dispossessed return home.
Let all who wander find welcome at the table.
Let all who hunger for liberation
come and eat.

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From JVP’s Passover Haggadah introduction:

Freedom and slavery, liberation and oppression, are both always present and always possible.

We arrive at the Passover table breathless, with the salty taste of authoritarian racism ripe on our tongues.

We arrive at the Passover table full of awe, with the rise of grassroots popular movements insisting on connection across borders and walls.

We arrive strong and grateful for one another; for our ever-growing movement for justice and liberation.

In the words of the poet and activist, Aurora Levins Morales:

This time we cannot cross until we carry each other. All of us refugees, all of us prophets. No more taking turns on history’s wheel, trying to collect old debts no one can pay. The sea will not open that way. This time that country is what we promise each other, our rage pressed cheek to cheek until tears flood the space between, until there are no enemies left, because this time no one will be left to drown and all of us must be chosen. This time it’s all of us or none.

This year we dedicate our seders to all of us, to our insistence on intersectionality, from gentrification to colonization; we are organizing to disrupt the root causes of displacement and violence at home and abroad.

May you find moments in this seder to exhale, to lean your head on the shoulder of a friend or comrade, to feel yourself arriving on the shores of liberation.

May you find moments of fierce righteous rage that motivate you to re-commit to local and national organizing.

And may you find moments to carry one another across, your pain and your losses, your visions and your victories, because this time it’s all of us or none.

L’Chayim, To Collective Liberation,

JVP Rabbinical Council

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