Spring is Already Here
The weekend of Friday night March 31 and Saturday, April 1 will be a wonderful opportunity to pray, learn, sing with and listen to three marvelous students of the H. L. Miller Cantorial School of the Jewish Theological Seminary. They will be leading Kabbalat Shabbat services Friday night, Shabbat morning services on Saturday morning and presenting a concert Saturday night. Featured in the program will be our own Zach Mondrow, who is now in his second year at the school.
This will be a chance to see and hear for yourselves how the future of Hazzanut is in well trained hands. Come and show support for these students and for Roz and Michael Grand who are being honored by JTS, this year. The whole event is free to the community, but we are looking for patrons, sponsors, etc. to help defray the costs. If you havenít sent in a donation in support of this weekend, please do so, as soon as possible.
In preparation for the upcoming holiday of Pesach, I will present the second Shabbat morning learning service. This time the topic will be getting ready for the holidays. We will learn about the Hallel service and some of the differences between Shabbat and Yom Tov services, as well as answer questions about Pesach to help you get ready. It will be held in the Cantor Klein Chapel on April 8 beginning at So to start off the discussion, below are list of questions you should ask in preparing your Seder:
What Kind of Seder Do You Want?
1. Did you attend your grandparents' seders as a child? What did you like most about them? What did you like least?
2. What are the elements from those seders you would like to sustain or revive, to include in your own seder or to discard?
3. Do you want a haggadah that is more traditional or more liberal? Would you like more Hebrew or more English or a combination of both?
4. Are there certain parts of the seder you think must be included? What are they? Are there parts of the seder you would like to eliminate? What are they? Would you like to know where you can be creative and still maintain what a traditional seder requires?
5. Are you going to be the leader, director, or producer of this seder; or do you have a partner or a team with whom to plan and conduct the seder? Does you partner or team have a clear sense of what they would like the seder to be? Have you shared your thoughts and feelings with one another? How can you include your different ideas and discuss them during the seder?
6. Who will be attending your seder? Will there be young children at your seder? How will you keep the children involved? Will grandparents be attending? Do they have any special needs? Are friends, Jews and non-Jews, attending? How will you help them become a part of the seder?
7. What about music? Have you thought about distributing song sheets to your guests? Do you have the need to stick to traditional songs and melodies, or are you open to including songs that address today's issues and use familiar modern melodies, songs that are easy to sing and fun for all.