Pesach

Which is better, Pesach or Easter?

By Simon Round, April 1, 2010

This weekend, Easter and Pesach coincide. This gives us the welcome opportunity to compare and contrast the two festivals and come to a firm conclusion about whether Christians or Jews have the better time.

On the surface the assumption is that the Christians win hands down. They get to eat chocolate eggs whereas our eggs are hard-boiled… and have salt water over poured over them for good measure. Plus they get chocolate bunnies and we don't get any bunnies at all, even with salt water on.

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Reform rabbi: Jews should think of Palestine during Seder

By Simon Rocker, March 25, 2010

The head of BBC's religion and ethics asked whether Jews think of Palestinian suffering at Pesach during a demonstration Seder last week.

Aaqil Ahmed was among a select group of journalists who attended the event organised by the Reform movement.

According to The Tablet, the Catholic magazine, guests were discussing "plagues of the modern world" when Mr Ahmed asked: "Not speaking personally, but journalistically, I would ask, do people remember the plight of those people today who suffer oppression at the hands of the Israelis?"

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Rabbi: Allow beans and pulses on Pesach

By Nathan Jeffay, March 25, 2010

Three years ago, Jerusalem rabbi David Bar-Hayim sent shockwaves through Israeli Orthodoxy after convening a beth din which ruled that all Israelis may eat kitniyot on Passover.

Now, he has come to the conclusion that the ruling should also apply to English Jews.

As well as following the Biblical law of avoiding chametz on Passover, Ashkenazi Jews observe a medieval tradition of also steering clear of numerous foods classified by rabbis as kitniyot, their term for pulses and legumes.

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Year-old butter sold for Pesach

By Leon Symons, March 25, 2010

Environmental health officers in Barnet have launched an investigation into the sale of Pesach butter almost a year beyond its "best before" date in a number of north-west London shops.

The Lurpak brand butter carries a white sticker with the date "20-05-10" next to the London Beth Din imprint. However, if the label is peeled back, it reveals a "best before" date of May 27, 2009. Lurpak has not produced any butter for Pesach this year.

A printed label on the side of the pack describes the sole agency for the UK as a Wembley company, S Schwartz Ltd.

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Pesach mice

By Simon Rocker, March 25, 2010

A pest controller, come to dispose of a colleague's mice, told her: "I do a lot of work in Stamford Hill but it's a bit of a problem. This time of year they insist the poison has to be kosher." And how do you make it kosher?
Just make sure it's wheat-free, she said.

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Gordon Brown: Pesach Sameach!

By Jessica Elgot, March 24, 2010

Britain’s expulsion of an Israeli diplomat this week did not prevent Prime Minister Gordon Brown sending the Jewish community a cheerful message of goodwill for Pesach.

Mr Brown sent a personal letter to wish the community “best wishes for a Pesach Sameach”, signed in his trademark black felt tip.

The letter reads: “This Pesach families will gather, just as they have for centuries, to eat around seder tables and read the Haggadah. The story they will tell is of course unique to the Jewish community – but it is one with lessons for us all.

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Smart shoppers win Pesach price war

By Robyn Rosen and Cathy Forman, March 18, 2010

Shoppers are the winners in a price war on Pesach essentials as kosher stores are meeting the competition from the major supermarket chains.

A JC investigation reveals that many stores have kept prices at last year's levels and used deals on matzah to lure customers through their doors. But independent retailers complain that they cannot compete with some supermarket specials.

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BA strike causes Israel Pesach anguish

By Leon Symons, March 16, 2010

Families looking forward to Pesach in Israel may face heartbreak as a result of the proposed British Airways cabin crew strike.

BA has cancelled all flights to Israel this weekend and will not resume until Tuesday. However, the main travel time is the following weekend — March 26 - 28 .

Former United Synagogue property director Alan Koch was one of those whose Pesach plans could be ruined by the strike.

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Sisters cut it fine

By Jessica Elgot, April 16, 2009

Three Hendon sisters have made the ultimate cuts for Pesach, having had hair grown over three years lopped off to be used for wigs for children with cancer.

The Blank girls — Yael, 15, Michal, 13 and Rachel, 11 — also raised almost £1,000 in sponsorship for Israeli cancer charity Zichron Menachem by performing a play about their project.

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