Passover Blessings

Passover this year lasts from sundown on April 8, 2020 to sundown on April 16, 2020.

The eight-day festival of Passover is celebrated in the early spring, from the 15th through the 22nd of the Hebrew month of Nissan, April 8 – April 16, 2020. Passover (Pesach) commemorates the emancipation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt. Pesach is observed by avoiding leaven, and highlighted by the Seder meals that include four cups of wine, eating matzah and bitter herbs, and retelling the story of the Exodus.

In Hebrew it is known as Pesach (which means “to pass over”), because G‑d passed over the Jewish homes when killing the Egyptian firstborn on the very first Passover eve. – from Chabad.org

Ready by Rabbi Rachel Barenblat

Passover by Kathleen McTigue

Image Creator: Joel S Fishman Image Credit: Getty Images/Photo Researchers RM

Liberation Meditations: Your Liberation Is on the Line

The truth is, however, that the oppressed are not “marginals,” are not people living “outside” society. They have always been “inside”—inside the structure which made them “beings for others.” The solution is not to “integrate” them into the structure of oppression, but to transform that structure so that they can become “beings for themselves.”  – Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed

Your Liberation Is on the Line by Rev. angel Kyodo williams

UU Lent 2020 – Day 42 – Resilience

“The oak fought the wind and was broken, the willow bent when it must and survived.” – Robert Jordan, The Fires of Heaven

“Persistence and resilience only come from having been given the chance to work through difficult problems.” – Gever Tulley

“It is really wonderful how much resilience there is in human nature. Let any obstructing cause, no matter what, be removed in any way, even by death, and we fly back to first principles of hope and enjoyment.” – Bram Stoker, Dracula

A Recipe for Resilience by Margaret Weis

The Strength of Water by Jamila Batchelder and Molly Housh Gordon

UU Lent – Day 39 – Mercy

“The quality of mercy is not strained.
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blessed:
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.
‘Tis mightiest in the mightiest. It becomes
The thronèd monarch better than his crown.
His scepter shows the force of temporal power,
The attribute to awe and majesty
Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings,
But mercy is above this sceptered sway.
It is enthronèd in the hearts of kings.
It is an attribute to God himself.
And earthly power doth then show likest God’s
When mercy seasons justice. Therefore, Jew, Though justice be thy plea, consider this-
That in the course of justice none of us
Should see salvation. We do pray for mercy,
And that same prayer doth teach us all to render
The deeds of mercy. I have spoke thus much
To mitigate the justice of thy plea,
Which if thou follow, this strict court of Venice
Must needs give sentence ‘gainst the merchant there” – Portia – Act 4: Scene 1 Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare

Seeking Mercy, Seeking Home by Erika A. Hewitt

Access Litany Prayer: A Responsive Reading by Bonnie Vegiard

Unexpected Sources of Liberation

During this time of social distancing and quarantine we have all been forced to wrestle with more than just a global pandemic. We have been told to look for silver linings. One of those silver linings is in spending more time with ourselves we are faced with our challenges and struggles.

Alanis Morissette’s song, “Thank U”, functions like a gratitude prayer to the many unexpected sources of liberation in her life.

Perhaps we can use this time to examine our challenges and be thankful for them. In our gratitude, maybe we can set ourselves free.