opening ourselves with the hinging daylight hours

Thursday, April 9, 2009

seder

Last night was the Seder at Sacred Heart. The parish invites about 75 parishoners who are dedicated volunteers to the church and the neighborhood. We sit and participate in a holy homily set to candle light. We follow the father and it almost feels like a rehersal dinner for a wedding. candles, flowers, linens, with our friends at a table together, with the rising moon peaking through the window, the voices of the cantor rising through the rafter. 

when from our exile G-d leads us home again, 
we'll think we're dreaming.


If G-d had crossed us through the sea, and not slain our enemies "It would have been enough for us. . . . "

It would have been enough for us.

In the same way that the bread and wine literally become the body and blood during the holy eucharist, so to does each step of the seder transubstantiate.  The bitter herbs are eaten to remember the torture of slavery (even though i think they are yummy),  the matzah that didn't have time to leven when we fled.  We take into ourselves the haroset, and are filled with mortar and the bricks of the time enslaved. My back isn't sore with the pain of carrying bricks, I have no scars on my body from being beaten, I don't know what it means to build for somebody else's violent empire, but still I feel connected to the Israelites enslaved to a system, yet waiting for the Promised Land.

The parsley overwintered in my garden this year. And during the Seder we eat this parsley dipped in salt water as we ourselves develop new growth as perennials in the spring. We spread and reseed ourselves.

I sat between two great friends, and to our right there was an empty seat. It was for Elijah. I know a boy named Elijah, a young boy farmer, who loves to grow food for his hungry family. I poured the wine from my cup onto the Seder plate for Elijah, who has moved away, and I remember fondly the one day last summer that we went to the ocean together, Elijah and I.  I remember the planted parsley together, and I know that the spirit of Elijah transfigures into the curious wisdom of waiting, in exile, with Manna in hand, for the Promised Land.



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