Cup of Elijah

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Pesach: A Season of Justice

This section of the Haggadah focuses on our hopes for the peace and redemption of messianic times, while also reminding us of what we can do l’taken et haolam, to repair the world in our own time. By way of example, North Shore Congregation Israel of Glencoe, IL’s Women’s Seder includes the following passage to be read while opening the door for Elijah. This reading reminds us that there are still injustices based on gender, and that we must continue to fight for equality in the Jewish community, in the workplace, economically and in society between men and women:

Elijah, we are told,

Will precede the Messiah.

He will be a sign to us.

And so we welcome Elijah

At the end of Shabbat,

A taste of the ideal, the messianic.

We pray, we sing.

At the Seder we even open the door.

At a bris we welcome a baby boy into the covenant. There we place a chair for Elijah, reminding us that each child born bears the potential…could make the difference…could be the Messiah.

But some would say that the Messiah will truly come when we welcome our daughters into the covenant with Elijah’s chair present, bringing them into our people, recognizing their potential to make a difference. We open the door. We welcome Elijah, girls and boys, women and men. Together, we realize potential. (Lisa S. Greene)