A Passover of Peace, a Celebration of Freedom

At Beckham Hall tonight many Wesleyans will join in the first Seder meal that marks the beginning of Passover. You can find out more information about the holiday on campus here. Our family gathered at my brother’s house yesterday for an early Seder, which was filled with the pleasures of breaking matzot together (and eating my matzah ball soup, my only culinary achievement). We talked of politics and education, family stories and sports. And we all marveled at our newest family member, baby Ruby, who reminded us all of how much joy one can get from simply getting another person smile….even giggle.

Part of the Seder is a reflection on the idea that if oppression and slavery still exist, then none of us are really free. At our Seder table, we talked about this in regard to the Palestinians and the Ukrainians, and in regard to the numerous ways in which violence continues to undermine freedom in so many places closer to home.

I hadn’t yet heard of the shooting in front of the Jewish Community Center in Overlook Park, Kansas. Three people were killed in the attack, according to press reports; all three were Christians devoted to family and community. The alleged shooter taken into custody is said to have ties to Nazi groups. He has long been a hate monger with a strong anti-Semitic and racist reputation. As Jay Michaelson wrote in the Forward: “Overland Park should issue a wake-up call. Oppression against one minority is oppression against all. And we Jews should not forget.”

None of us should forget: Oppression against one minority is oppression against all. As we strive to make our own campus community a place of peace, let us remember to struggle against oppression wherever we may find it.

Whatever tradition you belong to, why not use this week to think more about how we can contribute to ending oppression, making our communities places of peace.

1 thought on “A Passover of Peace, a Celebration of Freedom”

  1. Anyone who can make matzoh balls is indeed a Tzadick.. It takes skill I thought only a mother or grandmother could have, but you seem to have mastered its intricacies.
    Happy Pesach to you and your familly

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