2018 Liberation Seders
We are also please to announce that our own Rabbi Lucia Pizarro will lead the Seders in Toronto and London while the Seder in Hamilton will be lead by our special guest from Vancouver, returning for a second year, Rabbi David Mivasair.
About Rabbi David Mivasair
Rabbi David Mivasair is motivated by the commandments "justice, justice you shall pursue" and "seek peace and pursue it". For over 25 years, David served as the spiritual leader of synagogues in the US and in Vancouver, where he lives. David is active in the leadership of Independent Jewish Voices in Canada and Jewish Voice for Peace in the US. He lived in Israel for four years and in May went with 130 other Jews to support Palestinian activists defending their communities from destruction.
About Rabbi Lucia Pizarro
Lucia was born in Mexico City, where she became qualified to practice law. She completed an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Philosophy at the University of Essex in the UK. She followed her academic passion for Jewish thought with four years working for social justice in Palestine. She recently became a mother and a Rabbi. Her dream is to provide a space for Jewish activists, who stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people, to be able to act Jewishly.
Definitions of "Passover" and "Liberation Seder"
We offer the following definitions of "Passover" and "liberation seder": At Passover ("Pesach" in Hebrew), Jewish families celebrate with a ritual family dinner at which the story of the liberation of the ancient Hebrews from oppression in the land of Egypt ("Mitzrayim"), is recited. Seder means "order"—the order of the meal and ritual of Pesach that Jews all over the world have participated in for centuries. It is customary among Jews to invite guests, both Jewish and non-Jewish, to join their Passover celebration.
Our Liberation Seder draws on the legacy of Rabbi Akiva who used the Pesach Seder to plan a revolutionary struggle against the Romans, and of the many Jews in every generation who have used the Seder for political purposes, including the Partisans of the Warsaw Ghetto who began their revolt on the first night of Pesach, not only because the tactical need of the moment, but also because their understanding of the meaning of the Passover story.
As Jews committed to current liberation struggles, we enact this ritual to honour our history of resilience and participation in diverse movements for human emancipation across time. The ritual of the Seder gives us an opportunity to contend not only with legacies of oppression but also with current suffering that we survive, that we perpetrate and in which we are complicit.
Our Seders are dedicated to a free Palestine and the liberation of all peoples.
Underwriters, Endorsers, Sponsors, Partners and Community Friends:
Canadian Palestinian Social Association in London; Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East - Hamilton; Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War; International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network (IJAN) - Canada; Independent Jewish Voices (IJV) - Hamilton; NION Canada; Palestinian Association of Hamilton; People for Peace, London Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) - McMaster; Stop the JNF – Canada; The Nook Cafe; Women in Solidarity with Palestine