One of the hallmarks of the seder is the welcoming of Elijah the prophet into our homes for the latter part of the evening. Why Elijah? Because according to biblical and rabbinic lore, it is Elijah who will herald the coming of the messiah. It is Elijah who will announce to the world that the ongoing struggle for liberation and justice has finally come to an end, and that lasting freedom and peace are upon us.
As we begin to wind down the ritual meal, we call on Elijah to help us move closer to redemption. It is customary at the sederto open the door for the prophet, greet him with song, and fill a cup of wine for him. This cup of wine is not drunk like the other four cups, but is left on the table as a sign of hope for the future.
While in most homes, the seder leader fills Elijah’s cup from a bottle of wine, the Hasidic sage, Rabbi Naftali Tzvi Horowitz, insisted that every participant around the table pour some wine from his/her glass into the special cup of redemption. This symbolizes the need for each and every one of us to participate in the healing and transformation of the world.
At this time, we invite you to help fill the cup of Elijah at your table. As you do so, please share with the others one way in which you are going to use your unique talents and skills to help end the genocide in Darfur.
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