Passover 5783 at Congregation Beth Israel
Photos from prior Passover seders: Rabbi Rachel holding matzah; Two people dipping parsley; A seder plate coloring sheet; A group of children during the play.

Dear Congregation Beth Israel members and friends,

I hope everyone’s had a lovely week. I’m writing because Pesach is coming surprisingly soon. Believe it or not, we’re only 2.5 weeks away from seder.

As of this writing, RSVP numbers for our Second Night Community Seder are low. We would love to see more of you as we celebrate Pesach together in community again on Thursday, April 6 at 6pm. Please let us know as soon as possible if you plan to join us.

As in years past, you can expect:
  • Story! Our roadmap will once again be The Velveteen Rabbi’s Haggadah for Pesach, which interweaves the ancient story and classical prayers with contemporary poetry and creativity;
  • Drama! An opportunity for our young people to put on costumes and re-enact the Passover story with teacher and storyteller Jane Shiyah;
  • Dinner! CBI member Jen Burt is catering our multi-course seder meal, which will be kosher-for-Pesach and prepared with love;
  • Community! The evening will offer ample opportunity to connect with each other in community and remember why we like each other and this community so much;
  • Meaning! We’ll fulfill the mitzvah of experiencing seder as though we ourselves had been lifted out of Mitzrayim, and we’ll lean in to renewed hope and possibility.

As always, the second night seder will launch the seven-week Omer journey toward Shavuot, so stay tuned for more information about that. Please RSVP today so we can order the right amount of kosher chicken and other kosher-for-Passover goodies.

While I’ve got you here, join us tonight at 7pm for St. Patrick’s Day Kabbalat Shabbat, featuring the harmonies of the CBI choir, some special melodies for this special day, and more!

Blessings to all for a sweet and meaningful Shabbat,

— Rabbi Rachel Barenblat

Tickets are $45 per adult and $10 per child (ages 6-18); tickets for children ages 5 or under are free.

Tickets must be paid for in full prior to the day of the event. Payments can be made in one of the following ways:

  • Online via PayPal — just select “Special Events” from the drop-down list and add a note that your payment is for seder tickets. Though our online payments are processed via PayPal, you do not need a PayPal account in order to pay online; to pay with a credit or debit card, choose the "Donate with Debit or Credit Card" option when prompted. (Please note that we are not able to process credit or debit card payments by phone or in person.)
  • By check via mail to Congregation Beth Israel at 53 Lois Street, North Adams, MA 01247. Please make sure that your check is made payable to Congregation Beth Israel and note in the memo line that your payment is for seder tickets.

If you would like to attend but the cost makes you hesitate, please email In the event that we do not reach a minimum of 25 reservations by the RSVP deadline of Friday, March 24, the seder will be canceled and all tickets will be refunded.


A Few Pesach Resources

On the night before seder, there's a tradition of hiding some leaven around your home and then ritually "finding" it and burning it in the morning. Fun for all ages! Here's a piece from Rabbi Rachel about how to do that.

Do you want to try "keeping the Pesach" this year? Here's a column from Rabbi Rachel about different ways to do that.

Do you like contemplative coloring books? Pick up Color the Omer, which R. Rachel edited for publication, and bring creativity and visual beauty to your Omer count this year.

Candle Lighting Times
for Passover 5783

April 5 (Erev Pesach)
light at 7:04pm

April 6 (Pesach I)
light at 8:06pm

April 7 (Pesach II)
light at 7:07pm

April 8 (Pesach III)
havdalah at 8:08pm

April 11 (Pesach VI)
light at 7:11pm

April 12 (Pesach VII)
light at 8:13pm

April 13 (Pesach VIII)
havdalah at 8:14pm

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