Passover is coming…search for the Chametz!

BJennifer Schwartz, MCJC Religious School Lead Teacher

One of my favorite memories is finding the chametz before Pesach with my Papa.  We would hide small chunks of bread throughout the house on napkins; then we’d take a flashlight and go back through for a seek-and-destroy mission.  The chunks of bread would be swept into a paper bag and taken to our local shul to be burned the next day.

Why not start this tradition with your own family?  Customarily, the search for chametz (leavened food forbidden duing Passover) in the home is done with a beeswax candle, a wooden spoon, and a paper bag for collection.  Before collection, “hide” ten small pieces of bread throughout the house, wrapped in or on something flammable (no aluminum foil here guys). The hiding doesn’t even have to be done the day of the search!  Hide them before and adults can write down where they are, just in case. Make it a real mission for the kiddos!

The evening before Pesach, say the following prayer:

Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai
E-lo-hei-nu Me-lech Ha-olam
A-sher Ki-de-sha-nu Be-mitz-vo-tav
Ve-tzi-va-nu Al Bee-ur Cha-metz.

Or, in translation:

Blessed are You, L-rd our G-d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us by His commandments, and has commanded us concerning the removal of chametz.

Burning the Chametz

Next, have someone hold the lit candle and find all the hidden chametz, even ones you didn’t hide but you might just find!  The wooden spoon can be used to sweep the chametz into the bag. Once you’ve completed the search, gather the search party back together and recite the Kol Chamira:

All leaven or anything leavened which is in my possession, which I have neither seen nor removed, and of which I am unaware, shall be considered nullified and ownerless as the dust of the earth.

After this declaration is recited, all unknown chametz in your home will be considered nullified.  Your bag is now safe to be destroyed.

Chag pesach sameach and happy searching!

Passover 2018: It All Starts with a Question

Passover 2018: It All Starts with a Question

In the Jewish tradition, there’s a sense that everything gets moving as a result of a problem, a question, a Machloket in Hebrew. That even the most provocative question is still better than no question because, in the words of Rabbi Professor Donniel Hartman, questions, questioning, push at the limits of the sort of silent conspiracy of the way things have to be.

 

Upcoming Passover Programming at MCJC

MATZAH-MAKING WORKSHOP
On Sunday, March 11, at 10:00 am, our Religious School children will participate in a special hands-on Matzah-making workshop.

Our children will knead, roll and bake their own round hand-made Matzah as the ancient Hebrews did over 3,300 years ago. They will learn, experience and taste the tradition of eating hand-made Shmura Matzah on Pesach. Every child will be given a specially designed baker’s hat to wear and to keep as a souvenir.

For more information, see calendar listing on this site.

SPECIAL PASSOVER PROGRAM WITH FOX VALLEY SYNAGOGUE SCHOOLS AT CKI
On Sunday, March 18, from 10:00 am to noon, our Religious School will join the other Fox Valley synagogue schools for a special Passover program held at Congregation Kneseth Israel (CKI) in ElginClick here to reserve your space.

For more information, see our calendar listing on this site.

ANNUAL 2ND NIGHT COMMUNITY PASSOVER SEDER
On Saturday, March 31, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm, we’ll get together for our MCJC’s Annual Second Night Community Passover Seder. RSVP Here

For more information, see our calendar listing on this site.

Upcoming at MCJC Week of March 7

Please note: clickable links will take you to the calendar listing for more information.

Wednesday, March 7
1:00 pm: Lunch & Learn with Rabbi Tom
4:30 pm: Religious School

Friday, March 9
6:30 pm: Community Shabbat & Potluck Dinner

Saturday, March 10
9:30 am: Shabbat Morning Services: Special Torah Discussion

Sunday, March 11
9:15 am: Religious School
10:00 am: Special Matzah Making Program
11:00 am: Adult Ed with Rabbi Tom

Wednesday, March 14
1:00 pm: Lunch & Learn with Rabbi Tom
4:30 pm: Religious School

Friday, March 16
6:30 pm: Community Shabbat & Potluck Dinner

Saturday, March 17
9:30 am: Shabbat Morning Services: Special Torah Discussion

Sunday, March 18
8:00 am: Board Meeting
9:15 am: Religious School will be held at CKI in Elgin
for a special Fox Valley Passover Program
11:00 am: No Adult Ed with Rabbi Tom
3:00 pm: Prairie Jewish Youth Chocolate Seder Program

Wednesday, March 21
1:00 pm: Lunch & Learn with Rabbi Tom
4:30 pm: Religious School

Friday, March 23
6:30 pm: Community Shabbat & Potluck Dinner

Saturday, March 24
9:30 am: Shabbat Morning Services: Special Torah Discussion

Sunday, March 25
9:15 am: No Religious School – Spring Break
11:00 am: No Adult Ed with Rabbi Tom – Spring Break

Wednesday, March 28
1:00 pm: Lunch & Learn with Rabbi Tom CANCELLED
4:30 pm: No Religious School – Spring Break

Friday, March 30
6:30 pm: Community Shabbat & Potluck Dinner CANCELLED – First Night of Passover

Saturday, March 31
9:30 am: Shabbat Morning Services: Special Torah Discussion
6:30 pm: MCJC’s Annual Second Night Community Passover Seder 

Sunday, April 1
9:15 am: No Religious School – Spring Break
11:00 am: No Adult Ed with Rabbi Tom – Spring Break

MCJC Needs You!!!

We are looking for talented volunteers to join the MCJC team:

Volunteer Graphic Designer for logo, branding, brochures, fliers, etc. for print and online publications. Know PhotoShop or Illustrator? Have some talent? We need your help!

Volunteer to write and/or submit online Press Releases for MCJC. Coordinate with other committee members.

Please contact Rabbi Tom if you want to be part of the MCJC team at rabbi@mcjconline.org.

The Jewish Heart of McHenry County