For the Passover Seder, the ancient Rabbis for many years debated whether to drink four Cups of Liberation or five. They finally decided to prepare a fifth cup but set it aside, waiting for Elijah the Prophet to come to herald the Great Turning-point of history. Elijah would decide whether we should drink the fifth cup.  

So we will drink four cups of wine or grape juice, dedicating these four cups to facing the deadly triplets Dr. King named (Racism, Materialism, and Militarism), and one more: Sexism.

Our four cups will address (1) Racial and Economic Justice and Justice for Workers and Organized Labor, (2) Hyper-materialism,  devastating Mother Earth for the sake of corporate profit; (3) Militarism abroad and at home; and (4) Sexism.

We will also lift up the vision of a transformed society. We will drink a fifth cup, the Cup of Elijah, dedicating the cup and ourselves to taking action to bring nearer Dr. King’s vision of the Beloved Community.

[We kindle candles to light up the path of the Seder and our lives  All say together:]

We are the generation
That lives between the fires.

Behind us is the flame and smoke
From Black and blackened bodies
Burned and hanging from a myriad lynching trees,
And the flames of burning crosses lit by hate
To choke our people in the smoke of terror;
Behind us is the flame and smoke that rose from Auschwitz and from Hiroshima,
From the burning forests of the Amazon,
From the glare of gun fire exploding in our children.
From the hottest years of human history that bring upon us 
Melted ice fields. Flooded cities.
Scorching droughts. Murderous wildfires.

Before us is the nightmare of a Flood of Fire,
The heat and smoke that could consume all Earth.
Lit by the deadly triplets named by the Prophet Martin:
Racism, hyper-materialism, militarism:
The scorching of our planet
From a flood of burning fossils,

Or the blazing of our cities
In thermonuclear fire.

It is our task to make from fire
Not an all-consuming blaze
But the light in which we see each other—
Each of us different,
All of us made in One Image, glowing with One Spark.

[Kindling the candles of commitment:]

We light this fire to see more clearly

That the earth, the human race, are not for burning.

We light this fire to see more clearly
The rainbow in our many-colored faces.
Blessed are the Many in the One;
Blessed is the One within the Many.

Blessed are you, Yahh our God, Creative Interbreathing Spirit of the Universe, who makes us holy through connections with each other, and connects us through the kindling of these candles so that we may light up the path toward peace and freedom, justice and healing, for all peoples and our planet.

Blessed are You, Creative Interbreathing Spirit of the world, who fills us with life, lifts us up, and carries us to this moment.

 [Light candles.]

[We take into ourselves the foods and meanings of the Seder.]

haggadah Section: Introduction
Source: MLK+50 Interfaith Freedom Seder