Shabbat Parashat Tsav Shabbat HaGadol Passover Perspectives

Dear Friends,

One thing is sure….This Passover is going to be different from any Passover we have ever experienced. But, having a different Passover may just give us new perspectives on the holiday. We will have an extra zoom session during the intermediate days of Passover, after the Seder/s, and I would love to hear your stories and any new insights or perspectives you may have gained during this different Passover.

Some things don’t change. The basic story of the Exodus doesn’t change. But our telling of the story may change. Our understanding of the story may change because we are experiencing Passover even as we are experiencing radical change all around us.

This Shabbat is the final Shabbat before Passover and we read the weekly Torah Portion of Tsav that describes the mincha sacrifice – a grain offering. It was a grain offering, but it was not bread. It was unleavened grain. It was, in fact, matzah! It was the simplest form of baked food that may be used to sustain us in times of need. No fancy baking here. Just simplicity. Just the basics.

This year as Passover approaches, the matzah reminds us more than ever of those people who are in the background, taking care of us, even as most of us are staying at home. The matzah symbolizes the quiet, unassuming, almost invisible human beings – the ones who are simply doing their jobs, rather than standing out. It reminds us of the doctors, the nurses, the postal workers, the simple people whose gift to us is their unassuming dedication to helping all of us survive in this time of uncertainty. They are on the front lines, and we honor them at our Seder/s when we raise up and point to the matzah.

This Shabbat we read about the matzah in our Torah portion, and as we read the Torah portion, we prepare ourselves for a different Passover – one which will undoubtedly give us new perspectives and which will hopefully inspire us to value one another, to connect with one another, and to support one another as members of a loving and holy community.

I look forward to seeing you on the Zoom Virtual Abbreviated Kabbalat Shabbat this evening at 5:30 p.m. And I wish you and your loved ones a wonderful Shabbat and a Pesah Kasher V’Sameach – a kosher and a happy Passover!

Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi Gilah Dror