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Thursday, Adar 16, 5780 / March 12, 2020


Now that Purim is behind us, we start preparing for the holiday of Pesach (Passover). The Talmud says, “We connect the redemption of Purim, when we were liberated from Haman’s decree, to the redemption of Pesach, when we were liberated from the Egyptians.


Pesach is not just another holiday in the Jewish calendar. It is the root and basis of all the holidays. Pesach, this year, will begin in four weeks, Wednesday night, April 8.


In the Shabbat and holiday Kiddush we always mention the redemption from Egypt, because Pesach is the foundation of all holidays.


Remembering the Exodus is a daily mitzvah. The Torah commands, “You shall remember the day you came out of the land of Egypt all the days of your life (Deut. 16:3).


On Pesach we attained our freedom and became a nation. The purpose of the liberation from Egypt was to bring us to Mount Sinai so that we can get the Torah.


Even the mitzvah of resting on Shabbat, as stated in the Second Tablets, is connected to the Exodus and our liberation from Egypt. "Remember that you were a servant in the land of Egypt and the L-rd your G-d brought you out from there with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm; therefore, the L-rd your G-d commanded you to keep the Shabbat day" (Deut. 5:15).


According to our sages, thirty days before each of the three festive holidays we should begin studying and reviewing the laws and customs of that holiday. This is especially true for Pesach as there are so many laws and customs associated with Pesach, more than any other holiday. 


It is also important to understand the reasons for the many mitzvot and customs we do at the Seder.


The main focus of the Pesach Seder are the children. We have to encourage them to ask questions and we should be prepared to give them answers. Our attitude at the Seder is very important as this will reflect on how our children will view the importance of the Seder.


The Pesach holiday consists of seven days in Israel and eight days in the Diaspora.  Pesach celebrates two great miracles. The beginning of Pesach we celebrate the miracle of the Exodus, when Jews were freed from bondage after being in Egypt for 210 years.


The last days of Pesach celebrate the miracle of the parting of the sea, when the Jewish people crossed through the sea while the Egyptian’s, who were chasing after them, drowned.


 Between now and Pesach, we will, G-d willing, try to cover as much as possible about Pesach.