Saturday, April 16

Blending Traditions - Honoring the Past while considering the Present

A briefer post this evening - I need to get some final preparations done for tomorrow morning's Sunday School class. I know this will seem a little out of the ordinary for a Methodist - but we are celebrating a Seder.

It was really only in about the last 10 years that I came to the realization that the Last Supper wasn't just Jesus' last meal. It was the time of Passover and because Jesus was a Jew (insert gasp here) he would have celebrating the holy observances like the Passover meal. That put a new sense of perspective on not only the gathering - but also his addition that came "when the supper was over": the beginning of what we as Christians now know as communion.

The Seder is full of symbolism - so our class has spent the last few weeks studying some of the aspects of the readings, rituals and foods that are part of a Seder. The text that we will be using is a Messianic Passover Seder. This was designed by Jews who DO believe that Yeshua (Jesus) was the Messiah. Until a few years ago, I wasn't aware that there are Christ-believing Jews.

It will be interesting to observe this historic tradition from a new point of view. We will have readings and will share in The Telling - which is a reminder of how God delivered the people from slavery in Egypt and watched over them in the desert. And I like how this particular Haggadah adds to that by drawing a parallel between God delivering the people of Israel and how God (in the person of Jesus) delivered us again. And how he continues to watch over us in our time in the desert.

And we will enjoy some traditional foods (parsley dipped in salt water to represent the tears of people in bondage; bitter herbs; lamb) and some culturally relevant foods (olives, matzah, matzo ball soup). I think it will be a very interesting observance - admittedly it is a few days early. It should really be observed on Maundy Thursday.

Now if I could just find a hamster in a yarmulke.
(guess this bunny will have to do!)

1 comment:

  1. Glad you are doing this. It is powerful to connect with ancient tradition. The first time we did it, Rex and I were asked to be the parents at our table. That was special too.