“Speak to the whole community of Israel and say that on the tenth of this month each of them shall take a lamb to a family, a lamb to a household,” we read in this week’s Torah portion. This earliest mention of the celebration of the Exodus from Egypt, Passover, dictates both the ritual (sacrifice and eat a lamb) as well as the ritual attendees (your household). While we do not — and desire not to — slaughter cute, furry animals in the celebration of this holiday, we maintain the communal aspect to this day. Eating the Passover meal, sharing the Passover story, among a group of family and friends creates sacred community throughout the generations. Combined with the foodie aspects of the holiday, it is little surprise that the Passover Seder is the one of most observed Jewish rituals. The Passover offering mentioned in our Torah portion, then, both reflects and serves to create strong Jewish identity.
– Rabbi Aaron Meyer