You’re not Jewish? No Jewish heritage in your family or even on your neighborhood block? That’s ok; you can still enjoy the rich cultural and religious history of the Passover by creating a learning experience for your family at home! It’s a wonderful tradition, full of symbolism, history, and faith. This year Passover starts on April 20th and continues for 7 days. You’ll probably start to see kosher items on shelves in your grocery store now.
Howard W. Hunter once said “I believe it is safe to say that Passover is without equal in the Jewish calendar of celebrations. The Passover in the Old Testament and Easter in the New Testament testify of the great gift God has given and of the sacrifice that was involved in its bestowal. Both of these great religious commemorations declaire that death would ‘pass over’ us and could have no permanent power upon us, and that the grave would have no victory.” (Christ, Our Passover,” Ensign, May 1985, 17)
The first Passover dinner I attended was at BYU, sponsored by the religion department. I was so impressed and wanted to learn everything I could about this beautiful Jewish celebration. Over the years I have attended Passover dinners with an Institute class, community center, and my local Jewish synagogue. Now I have a next door neighbor who is Jewish and I’m so excited to be able to share this tradition with our families. What a terrific day to open the door of understanding and begin a religious discussion that embraces the old and lovingly introduces the new. There is much we can learn from one another, especially when approached with kindness and understanding.
If you’d like to recreate the Passover dinner for Family Home Evening, there are some terrific web sites to help get you started. The experience can enrich your own understanding of the scriptures and gratitude for what the Lord has done for all of his children.
www.byub.org/newtestament/episode.asp?id=30 – The Last Supper
www.byub.org/newtestament/episode.asp?id=29- Preparations for the Last Supper