Today at Morgantown Care and Rehabilitation we were able to celebrate part of a Jewish Seder. Beginning at sunset this evening is the celebration of the Jewish holiday, Passover. This festival commemorates the story of the Exodus, in which the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt.
What we were able to enjoy with some of our elders and stakeholders today was a small part of the traditional meal that Jewish families gather for on the first night of Passover. This special dinner is called a Seder (derived from the Hebrew word for “order”, referring to the very specific order of the ritual). During this meal, the story of the Exodus from Egypt is retold using a special text called the Haggadah. Each part of the meal is symbolic of each part of the story.
We enjoyed some very tasty charoset on matzo (unleavened) bread this afternoon as we discussed Passover. There are different styles of charoset; ours consisted of apples, honey, cinnamon, sugar, and dried cranberries. The charoset is representative of mortar (or mud used to make adobe bricks) which the Israelites used when they were enslaved in Ancient Egypt as mentioned in the Talmud. The word “charoset” comes from the Hebrew word cheres — חרס — “clay.”