This is Shabbat HaGadol. What I like best is not why we call it Shabbat HaGadol, but what tradition asks us to do on it.
The Pesach Seder is so important on so many levels that we make sure that we at least use the Shabbat beforehand to think about it. It is our custom to actually review the Haggadah on the Shabbat before the Sedarim. We think of Shabbat HaGadol as Shabbat Haggadah!
The essence of Pesach and of the Seder, is to see ourselves as though each of us personally came out of Egypt. This is our story and how we came to be.
When you plan a trip, do you go on line and check out interesting places to visit? Do you ever purchase a travel book, investigate the customs, temperature, activities and adventure opportunities there? Ever ask your kids to go on line to pick some places or activities? Do you think about what you will pack, maybe buy new clothes for the trip? If a foreign language is being spoken there, will you find a glossary of important terms?
Isn’t it true that we prepare to make the trip fun and exciting for ourselves and our families? Of course it is.
As parents and grandparents, we are in the memory making business and we want to create the most meaningful memories for our children and grandchildren.
The Passover Seder is a very real spiritual journey.
How will you prepare for it?
What will you do to create deep, positive and meaningful memories for yourself and your family?
You don’t just jump on a plane in your pajamas with no suitcase and no plans, do you?
You don’t just go on a weeklong journey and wing it, do you?
If you are not leading your own Seder, how might you be able to help the leader? Have you offered?
We have the famous Four Questions. A question I never want to be asked is, “How Come You Did Not Really Try to Make This Night Different From All Other Nights” or worse, that as a result of our not giving this spiritual journey our best effort, our grandchildren are not even at a Seder to ask a question.
Don’t ask why it is called Shabbat HaGadol. Rather, ask what you can do to make sure it is and do it!
Our Shabbat Torah Study starts at 9:45 a.m. Rabbi Herb Yoskowitz will cause us to think about Shabbat HaGadol as Shabbat Haggadah. He will be examining the meaning of the plagues and about other parts of the hagadah to help make your Sedarim more interesting than ever.