ON PASSOVER, SWEETNESS HAS A BITTER COMPANION





As we come together for Passover ⁠– the ability to gather, feast and flourish restored – our collective sense of freedom and joy attunes us to relief of the Israelites as they stood on the shores of the Red Sea, full of hope for the future.


Then as now, this joy is sweet and desperately deserved. But, as is always the case on Passover, sweetness has a bitter companion.


Because even as we gather overjoyed and reunited around the seder table, too many of our fellow Canadians are starving. For almost a decade, more than 1 in 7 households (1.4 million children and 2.6 million adults) have struggled to put food on the table. Even this land of plenty:


When the market booms, four million go hungry.

When the going is good, four million go hungry.


When pandemic strikes, five million go hungry.


When "things get back to normal", four million go hungry.


As we enjoy our "back to normal" this Passover, let us remember what "normal" means for millions of our neighbours.


This year, let us dedicate our Seders to these millions by "inviting the hungry to our table." Invite them in word and deed: through this dedication, and through Tzedakah given to Mazon -- an organization that fights hunger on behalf of our Jewish community. As you enjoy your Seder meal, this tzedakah will feed people of different ages, ethnicities, faith and abilities, all across the country.


As the book of Isaiah teaches us: "If you give of yourself to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the poor, the Lord will guide you always."


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Feel inspired and want to share this sentiment with your Seder guests?


With Mazon's new Dayenu program, both Seder hosts and guests can bring gratitude, empathy, and education to their Seder tables through thought-provoking readings and activities, while feeding the hungry in honour of their friends and loved ones with cards or ecards. The post above is adapted from this material!


Hosts enjoy extra bonuses to make your Seder special, like children's activities, a Passover cookbook, and place cards to let each guest know about the gift in their honour!


Readings include:

  • A "Seder Dedication", like the one above, to let guests know about the gift made in their honour, and dedicate your Seder to those whose plates are empty.

  • A "Before The Meal" empathy-building mindfulness exercise on hunger

  • "The Four Children of Food Insecurity"

  • "Four Canadian Rabbis on Hunger"

  • A Canadian hunger factsheet

  • And more!

Curious? Learn more: