LEADER: The story of the Jewish people’s journey from slavery to liberation is the heart of the seder.
Ha Lachma Anya.
This is the bread of poverty.
ALL: This is the bread of poverty which our ancestors ate in the land of Egypt. Let all who are hungry come and eat. Let all who are in need come and share our meal. This year we are here. Next year, may we all be in the land of Israel. This year we are still slaves. Next year may we all be free.
LEADER: We were slaves in Egypt and God brought us out from there with a strong hand and an outstretched arm. If God had not brought us out from Egypt, then we, our children, and our children’s children might still have been slaves in Egypt.
“If there is a moment in the seder that should leave us feeling self-conscious, it is now. ‘This is the bread of affliction,’ we read. True enough; matzah is the quintessential discomfort food.
But what follows is a problem: ‘All who are bent with hunger, come and eat.’
This invitation to the hungry seems empty... Could it be teaching us that this night, in one crucial way, is just like all other nights? On all other nights we eat to satisfaction, without a thought for the hungry stranger. Tonight we speak of hunger, but do nothing to alleviate it.”
- Excerpt by Jeffrey Goldberg from NEW AMERICAN HAGGADAH edited by Jonathan Safran Foer
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