Later this week, Jews worldwide will begin the celebration of Passover. Grounded in the ancient story of oppression, liberation and renewal, Passover, like all Jewish holidays, marks an event in the life of the community rather than the life of any individual. The Passover observance centers in the home at the seder, the ritual meal at which we remember and retell the story of 400 years spent in slavery in Egypt, “strangers in a strange land,” and the terrifying, transformative journey through the parted Red Sea towards the Promised Land and redemption.
The seders of my early childhood were interminable affairs, made by and for men who mumbled their way through Hebrew texts that seemed to have as much to do with me as the men had to do with the kitchen from which the bountiful food materialized.
But the Old Testament is full of strong and righteous women, including those without whom the passage out of slavery in Egypt could not have happened. The central message of Passover is Continue reading