Passover is just a couple days away so we asked the GatherDC staff to share some of their favorite haggadot [Editor’s note: haggadot is the plural of haggadah]. A haggadah (literally, “telling” in Hebrew), is a Jewish text that contains the prayers, songs, and rituals to help facilitate the Seder and tell the Passover story. We love how haggadot come in all kinds of shapes and sizes; there really is no one set haggadah that you must follow. Choosing a haggadah (or even making one!) can be so meaningful and really add to your Passover celebration.
Here are some of the incredible haggadot that the Gather team chose to share:
Haggadah Choice: The Goldberg Passover Haggadah
Description: A classic! My family has used this as our haggadah for as long as I can remember. This is an especially great version if you have folks around the table who are less familiar with the Seder, since the pages and sentences are clearly numbered.
Haggadah Choice: Night of Beginnings: A Passover Haggadah by Marcia Falk
Description: Marica Falk’s haggadah is a full re-telling of the Passover story. I love that this haggadah is grounded in storytelling, draws special attention to the women of the Passover story, and is very lyrical. It includes lots of poetry, beautiful images, and the pages are colored according to different themes! Falk encourages us to bring our own personal experiences to this ritual holiday, and I particularly appreciate her interpretation of the four children.
Haggadah Choice: The Velveteen Rabbi’s Haggadah for Pesach
Description: This haggadah was created by Rabbi Rachel Barenblat, who blogs under the pseudonym “The Velveteen Rabbi.” This haggadah brings poetry, storytelling, song, and a strong feminist interpretation to the Passover seder. It was also the inspiration for the haggadah I created for the first seder I ever hosted!
Haggadah Choice: The Stonewall Seder Haggadah
Description: This haggadah was created by Congregation B’nai Jeshurun (and draws heavily from sections of The Queer Pride Seder created by Ray Schnitzler and Susie Kisber of Queer Minyan). It is a beautiful invocation of queer Jewish history form both the far past and more recent history, remembering those who did not live through the AIDs crisis and incorporating the words of Harvey Milk, Magnus Hirschfield, and many others.
Haggadah Choice: Jewish Veg Haggadah
Description: This haggadah describes the Jewish connection, as well as the specific Passover connection to veganism. As the Jewish people faced a crisis in the time of leaving Egypt and had to learn to adapt, we too are facing a crisis: climate change. Just as the Jewish people adapted in the past, we must also learn to adapt Jewish customs and traditions to reflect the current state of our world.
Haggadah Choice: Make your own!
Description: I think the incredible thing about haggadot and Passover is that there is so much freedom to be creative. My haggadah of choice is actually not a completed haggadah, but the tool my family uses to make our own. I love being able to put a personal spin on the seder and bring the voices in my family to life through our homemade haggadah.
Haggadah Choice: My COVID Haggadah!
Description: First of all, don’t let the name fool you; this isn’t COVID-themed. But in 2020, my family was facing a Zoom seder and didn’t really know how to go about doing that, so I took it upon myself to make my own Haggadah I could send to them via PDF to follow along with. It was an incredibly empowering experience for a very weird time! In looking at what goes into the seder and reinterpreting the different pieces (four sons = four daughters, anyone?), I got to engage with the holiday in a way I never had before and make the seder a uniquely meaningful experience for my family. It was also an entry into the classic Gather idea that finding your own meaning in your Judaism doesn’t have to be hard or scary, but can be really fun.
Chag Pesach Sameach from the Gather team!
* * *
The views and opinions expressed in this blog and on this website are solely those of the original authors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the organization GatherDC, the GatherDC staff, the GatherDC board, and/or any/all contributors to this site.