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Pesah (Passover) 2022

Passover is Zeman Heiruteinu, the Season of Our Freedom from Slavery in Egypt. The highlight of the festival is the Seder, the ritualized “retelling” of the story of the Exodus. We are guided by special songs, foods, and symbols—including matzah (unleavened bread), maror (bitter herbs), haroset (a tasty dish of apples, nuts, and wine), 4 cups of wine, and more. In preparation for the holiday, Jews take special care to clear their houses of hametz (leaven), which cannot be consumed throughout the eight-day festival. The liturgy of the first day of the holiday includes Tefilat Tal, the Prayer for Dew upon the conclusion of the rainy season in Israel. Services on the last day include the Yizkor memorial prayers, and each daily service includes a special Torah reading.


Rabbinical Assembly Pesah Guide

The Pesah Guide for 5782 is now available, including an addendum with additional insights for this year. 

Mekhirat Hametz—Selling of Hametz  

If one cannot completely remove all hametz from the home during Pesah, Jewish law provides for the conditional sale of hametz to a non-Jew during Pesah. Upon the conclusion of Pesah, the hametz reverts to its original owner.

It is customary to make a contribution for ma’ot hittin, providing Pesah food for the needy, when selling hametz. To sell your hametz, click here. Hametz must be sold by Thursday, April 14 and will revert to its original owner at the conclusion of Pesah on Saturday evening, April 23. Click here to download the form.

Bedikat Hametz—Search for the Hametz and Bi'ur Hametz—burning hametz

The search for leavened bread takes place on Thursday evening, April 14, after sunset. Members of the family, equipped with a lighted candle, go from room to room gathering crumbs of bread to ensure that the house has been cleansed of all hametz.  Many families have a custom of hiding pieces of bread in order to guarantee that something may be found.  

Special b’dikat hametz sets (including a feather, spoon, candle, and instructions) are available from the Sisterhood Judaica Shop. The last time to eat hametz is 10:55 AM on Friday, April 15. Hametz must be destroyed before 12:00 PM.

Siyyum Bekhorim—Siyyum for the First Born

On Friday morning, April 15, all first-borns are urged to join the Siyyum Bekhorim following the 7:15 AM minyan. This observance reminds us that when the first-born of Egypt were slain during the Tenth Plague, the Israelite first-born were saved. In appreciation for this redemption, it is incumbent upon first-born Jewish males to fast on the day before Pesah. This responsibility is nullified when one celebrates the completion of text study. 

At the siyyum we will honor the students of Rabbi Berkowitz’s Talmud class and celebrate their learning, which nullifies the obligation for first-borns to fast on the eve of Passover. We will conclude the siyyum with a Seudat Mitzvah, a celebratory meal provided through the generosity of Micki and Lowell Gordon.

Sisterhood Passover Flowers

Enhance your holiday table or send flowers to a family member or friend. A beautiful flower arrangement always complements a holiday table. Let B’nai Israel Sisterhood do the legwork so you have less to think of during your holiday preparations. 

$60/arrangement (local delivery)
$70/arrangement (out of area delivery)

The order deadline has been extended until Friday, April 8. Arrangements will arrive in time for the holiday. Click here to download an order form. For questions, contact Linda Heller.

Shop for Passover at the Sisterhood Gift Shop Online - Pick Up at Your Convenience!

If you are needing any items for Passover, please know that in addition to shopping in-store, you can also browse the Sisterhood Judaica Shop ONLINE. You can view all of the merchandise, pay online, and pick up either in the shop or at a convenient pick-up table at your convenience. Click here to browse and shop today.

Online resources

Large Print Haggadot From the Jewish Braille Institute of America

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Haggadahs-R-Us is again offering free downloads of several hagaddotClick here for more information.

Learn about the history and structure of the Haggadah at Check out these online Haggadah resources:

Traditional Haggadah by Rabbi Barry Dov Lerner. Find other Passover materials including song parodies at his site,

Make your own Haggadah at

Feast of Freedom Passover Haggadah The Feast of Freedom is available in full as a free PDF. Print copies may be purchased here.

Passover Music by Cantor Josh Perlman 


Project Zug: Midrashic Tales of Jewish Survival in Egypt
with Rabbi Tali Adler
Mondays, March 21 and April 7
7:30-8:30 PM
Every year at the seder we celebrate our liberation from Egypt. Surprisingly, however, the seder contains very little information about what our enslavement in Egypt was like or how we managed to survive our time there. Join us as we study rabbinic texts about what the Jewish people endured in Egypt and the strategies they used to survive and even flourish under Egyptian rule. Along the way we'll ask ourselves: what are the tools that enable human beings to endure oppression? What do human beings need, in times of trauma, to create meaning and even joy? What does it look like to insist on one's own humanity in a world that seeks to deny it--and what might this teach us about what it means to be human in the first place? Click here for more information and to register.

Project Hope
Sunday, April 10
9:00 AM–12:00 PM
Help us deliver Passover packages to seniors in the Rockville area. This year we will again be participating in the Project Hope Passover Delivery with JSSA on Sunday morning, April 10. We will be distributing the names and addresses of the recipients and the packages in the parking lot of B'nai Israel that morning. All volunteers are asked to wear masks for more information. 

Bonim: Chocolate Seder (Grades K–2)
Sunday, April 10
12:30–1:45 PM
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate is all you will see at this fun Passover Program! 

Machar: Snacking Seder (Grades 3–5)
Sunday, April 10
12:30–1:45 PM
Snack your way around the seder plate during this fun afternoon program!

First Night Community Seder with Cantor Josh
Friday, April 15
6:30 PM
Celebrate our freedom with your B’nai Israel family at this congregational seder, led by Cantor Josh Perlman. A traditional, lively, and song-filled seder will include a delicious meal and the greatest humor of our very own Cantor Josh. Reservations are due by Monday, April 4.  Click here for more information and to register.

service times & candlelighting

Friday, April 15
7:15 AM Morning Service and Siyyum Bekhorim
10:55 AM Stop Consuming Hametz
Burn Hametz by 12:00 PM
First Night
6:30 PM First Night Community Seder with Cantor Josh Perlman
7:27 PM Candlelighting

Saturday, April 16
First Day of Pesah

9:00 AM Festival Service (Click here for Rabbi Berkowitz's Source Sheet)
10:45 AM Youth Service (all ages)
12:30 PM Minha  
Candlelighting is after 8:13 PM 

Sunday, April 17
Second Day of Pesah

9:00 AM Festival Service
10:45 AM Youth Service (all ages)
The Pesah Pizza Party will take place during the Congregational Kiddush. All are invited. No registration is required.
12:30 PM Minha   
8:00 PM Ma’ariv   

Weekday services, Monday–Thursday will take place at their regularly scheduled times, 7:15 AM and 8:00 PM

Thursday, April 21
7:33 PM Candlelighting 
8:00 PM Festival Ma’ariv

Friday, April 22
Seventh Day of Pesah

9:00 AM Festival Service (Click here for Rabbi Berkowitz's Source Sheet)
10:30 AM Youth Service (all ages)
Candlelighting is by 7:34 PM
6:15 PM Minha and Ma’ariv   

Saturday, April 23
Eighth Day of Pesah

9:00 AM Festival Service with Yizkor Prayers (11:00 AM)
10:15 AM Family Minyan (K–6)
11:00 AM Tot Shabbat
12:30 PM Minha  
The festival ends at 8:21 PM.

*There will be no evening services at B’nai Israel on Friday, April 15 or Saturday, April 16. Copies of the evening service along with CDs of the chanting are available from the office to enable individuals to conduct the Ma’ariv service in their homes.


Soupergirl Passover Menu  & B’nai Israel Discount

Passover is just around the corner and Soupergirl is here to help! We will, once again be offering a healthy, hand-crafted, all natural, absolutely delicious Passover meal delivery program. The Soupergirl menu includes some classics (haroset, tsimmes, and more), along with a full list of delicious soups and desserts. Everything is 100% plant-based (parve). This year—new items! Kosher for Pesah gazpacho? You betcha! Kugel? Yup! Chocolate nut bars? Why not? The site is now live at Get thee some hand-made maror!

This year, Soupergirl is offering a special 5% discount for the B’nai Israel community. Enter the code BNAI when checking out to receive the discount. And YES, we deliver AND ship nationwide. Pick up is also available! Orders MUST be received by Sunday morning, April 10 at 10:00 AM.

Questions? Comments? Send an email to:

Wed, October 5 2022 10 Tishrei 5783