There’s a table at Chabad of Sacramento set for the holiest of meals – a table set for the commemoration of God’s saving power in Passover.
Passover is the time when Jews believe the angel of death God sent to kill firstborns in ancient Egypt literally passed over Jewish homes that had been marked with lamb’s blood by His instruction.
After the killings, Pharaoh finally released the Jews from slavery.
“It’s the most significant night of the year, ” Rabbi Mendy Cohen of Chabad of Sacramento said Monday, the first evening of Passover.
The Seder meal eaten on this occasion features wine to celebrate freedom, as well as bitter herbs to recall struggle.
“We remember the suffering. We remember that in every generation they want to kill us and God saves us in miraculous ways,” Rabbi Mendy said.
The latest suffering on the eve of this year’s Passover observance as a former Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan who once ran for Congress on an anti-Semitic platform, killed three people outside of a Jewish community center and retirement complex in Kansas.
If he was trying to kill Jews he didn’t succeed.
Instead, he took the lives of two Methodists and a Catholic.
It’s a shooting that hit home for capitol city councilman and Kansas City-native Steve Cohn who grew up learning at that center.
His son’s Bar Mitzvah was held at Sacramento’s B’nai Israel just one week after an anti-semtic firebombing there in 1999.
Via statement he said, “we would not give in to this senseless violence then and i believe it is just as important today that the voices of tolerance and reason in Kansas City drown out the voices of hate.”
Rabbi Mendy couldn’t agree more.
“It will not deter us from celebration, happiness and belief in God,” Rabbi Mendy said.