This may take up to thirty seconds.
Welcome to our Harry Potter Seder! This will hopefully be a fun version of the traditional family seder. We are still going to go through the important parts of the Seder: Kiddush, The Four Questions, We Were Slaves, Four Children, Ten Plagues, and the rest. Hold on to your brooms! We are now going to celebrate the holiday of Passover together!
Leader: The word seder means "order", and the Passover ritual follows a very specific order. Throughout the meal, we drink four glasses of wine — a symbol of the four promises made to Moses about the liberation of the Jewish people. In the book of Exodus it is written that God told Moses:
Leader: I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. I will rid you out of their bondage. I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments. I will take you to me for a people, and ye shall know that I am the Lord, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
Leader: To begin the seder, we share this first cup of wine. We drink this cup in remembrance of the first promise: I will bring you out.
Raise your wine glass.
All: Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, borei p'ri hagafen.
(Blessed art thou, the LORD our God, who createth the fruit of the vine)
Drink your wine.
The first hand-washing of the seder is unusual. The rabbis point out that even a child would wonder at least two things: why do we wash without a blessing and why do we bother to wash when we will not be eating our meal for some time. They suggest that we wash our hands here in order to raise questions. Questions, both of wonder and of despair, are crucial to our time at the seder and, really, our growth as human beings.
We have permission to ask questions, even of God, when we see and experience suffering. One person will symbolically wash their hands for all of us seated here.