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Passover holy days start at sundown

By Matt Russell

mrussell@postbulletin.com

Passover, the Jewish holy days that commemorate the delivery of the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt, begins at sundown today and continues for eight days.

"There's a number of people that are traveling around to go see family during Passover," said Rabbi Dovid Greene of Chabad-Lubavitch synagogue in Rochester. "It's a big deal."

Traditional feasts called seders are an important part of Passover observance. Special dishes and utensils used only during seders are unpacked and, traditionally, homes are cleaned thoroughly in preparation for the meals, during which flat bread called matzah typically is eaten.

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During seders, the story of Exodus is told, and bitter herbs are eaten to recall the pain of slavery.

"As we approach Passover and relive the exodus from Egypt, I urge us all to consider what things we can do to increase and deepen our connection to Klal Yisra'el -- the entirety of the Jewish people and to B'nai Israel--our local Jewish community," Rabbi David Freedman wrote to B'nai Israel members in the synagogue's April newsletter.

Greene said that he encourages people to open their homes to anyone who doesn't have a place to go during the first two nights of Passover, when seders are held.

"If anybody needs a place for Passover, they should be sure to call us," he said.

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