Sunday, May 9th 2021   |


Area Reform rabbis ramp up tech to ride out crisis

BY DEAN M. SHAPIRO, Special to the CCJN

With the spread of the coronavirus throughout the New Orleans area keeping most people sequestered in their homes, all of the local synagogues are closed and all in-house services are cancelled as the annual Passover observance begins Wednesday evening, April 8.

In lieu of the traditional gatherings for services and second night Passover seders, thre rabbis from the area’s south shore congregations...

Shopping for Passover is different this year than all other years


(JTA) — Ahead of Passover, Hannah Lebovits’ local kosher store is usually bustling, its tight aisles packed with people shopping for matzah meal and macaroons while kibitzing in the aisles. She typically comes in knowing the exact ingredients she will need for a scrumptious Seder.

“There’s an excitement to it. There’s a sense of you’re going to the store, you’re getting the things you need,” said the...

OP-ED: Passover in vitro


As more than one commentator has mused, this year’s Passover is very much like the very first Passover. The Torah tells us that prior to the Exodus from Egypt, as the Hebrews sheltered in their own homes with only blood on the outside of their doorposts to protect them, the Angel of Death passed over and spared our people.

Now that we have arrived at the onset...

Adam Sandler pays tribute to doctors and nurses in brand-new ‘Quarantine Song’

(JTA) — Forget about “The Chanukah Song.” Actor Adam Sandler’s latest earworm is a tribute to doctors and nurses and an exhortation for people to stay home to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Sandler debuted “Quarantine Song” from his home during a guest appearance Thursday on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.” Fallon was broadcasting from his home as well.

Sandler pulled a hoodie over his baseball cap and...

Israel’s pre-Passover egg shortage is no yolk. But millions of imported eggs are on the way.

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A ship carrying millions of eggs arrived in Israel’s Ashdod port on Sunday in an effort to alleviate the country’s coronavirus-induced egg shortage just days before the Passover holiday. The country’s estimated shortage of about 30 million eggs means that Israelis’ typical Passover diets could be hard to sustain. Demand for eggs typically goes up about 20% ahead of the weeklong holiday, when bread and other products...

OP-ED: This is not a Passover for despair


– For most of us, this is the saddest Passover we can recall.

The coronavirus pandemic is unlike any previous trauma we’ve lived through. Nothing, not even the 9/11 attacks, brought our world to an extended collective halt the way the efforts to contain the disease has done.

Israelis may have endured the traumas of the “sealed rooms,” where they waited out the 1991...



Among the many symbolic foods associated with the Passover seder, and intended to dramatize the retelling of the Exodus, is saltwater. Bowls or cups containing saltwater (or Passover vinegar) are placed around the seder table.

According to the Rema (Rabbi Moshe Isserles, 1530-1572), the saltwater is placed directly on the Seder Plate itself as a central element of the ritual. My family follows this tradition....

For young Jews away from their families, the coronavirus puts Passover in jeopardy


(JTA) — Randi Bergman isn’t sure of her Passover plans yet, but there’s a good chance she’ll be spending the holiday alone. 

Bergman, a 34-year-old freelance fashion writer, lives alone in what she calls a junior one-bedroom apartment in downtown Toronto. The setup — desk, bed, couch, TV, kitchenette but no dining table — fits her usual busy lifestyle, which doesn’t involve a ton of cooking and...

Off the Pulpit: This Seder Is like the first


When we sit down to Passover seders, we read about the oppression in Egypt and try to imagine ourselves as enslaved. We often forget that we are celebrating a holiday first celebrated before liberation.

The very first night of Pesach the Israelites were anxious and scared and knew that what was happening had no precedent in history. They hoped for a miraculous deliverance but had not yet...

Local ‘Bubbe Club’ organized here

Carol Newman and Cathy Bart founded a “Bubbe Club” for Jewish grandmothers (and others) in the Greater New Orleans area and have just launched a new Google-based website.

The Bubbe Club website includes includes online resources such as Passover favorites, Seder songs, Seder crafts and lots of recipes.

Interested persons wishing to join the Bubbe Club and gain access to the site can email Carol Newman or Cathy...