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March 31, 1961 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1961-03-31

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THE JEWISH NEWS

Incorporating the Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951

Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National
Editorial Association.
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit 35,
Mich., VE 8-9364. Subscription $5 a year. Foreign $6.
Entered as second class matter Aug. 6, 1942 at Post Office, Detroit, Mich. under act of Congress of March
8, 1879.

PHILIP SLOMOVITZ

Editor and Publisher

SIDNEY SHMARAK CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ HARVEY ZUCKERBERG

Advertising Manager

Business Manager

City Editor

Passover Scriptural Selections

Pentateuchal portions: First Day, Saturday, Ex.. 12:21-51, NU712. 28:16-25; Second Day, Sunday,
Lev. 22:26-23:44, Num. 28:16-25. Prophetical portions: Saturday, Joshua 5:2-6:1, Sunday, II
Kings 23:1-9; 21-25.

Licht Benshen, Friday, March 31, 6:39 p.m.

VOL. XXXIX. No. 5

Page Four

March 31, 1961

Passover—Emphasis on Human Dignity

Passover has an inspiration unmatched by any other festival. The oldest on
our calendar, this Festival of Freedom is observed in the spirit instilled in the
Mishna: "In all generations, one should regard the Exodus as one's own experience."
Thus it becomes not only the festival of an entire people but also of each individual
member of the observing people. The freedoms of the group and the individual thus
are interlinked. When a person is determined to preserve his liberties, there is greater
assurance that the group will have equal guarantee that its. rights will be retained.
Passover is the festival of human dignity. We learn this lesson, too, from the
Mishna, where we are taught: "Even the poorest Jew, a recipient of charity, must,
on the eve of Passover, eat only in a reclining position, as a mark of freedom, and
drink no less than four cups of wine."
This- is not legend: it is reality. It is part of a great tradition that has helped to
keep Jewry alive during the most trying periods in our people's history.
Passover bids us to remember the past, never to forget that our ancestors once
were enslaved, that they were strangers in a strange land. Therefore the festival
teaches us—and we pass this on to our children and children's children—to be hos-
pitable and kindly to strangers, to despise slavery and to battle against it, whether
it affects us or our neighbors.
That's the lesson of Passover: the command to strive for human dignity and to
demand it for all mankind, so that there should be no exception to the rule when seek-
ing freedoms for- ourselves:
In Jewish tradition, the
dignity of human behav-
ior assumed the status of
sanctity. That is why slav-
ery came to be abhorred,
and when a man was will-
ing to accept bondage as
a way of solving his eco-
nomic problem he be-
came despised and was
condemned in the eyes of
the Jewish society in the
midst of which he lived.
The ancient Hebraic
tradition of freeing the
slaves after seven years
of service stems from the
love for freedom that
found its emphasis in the
Passover story.
Inheritance of the Pass-
over spirit as a guide to-
wards libertarian aspira-
tions stems from the
great role played by Pass-
over as the home festival.
Young and old derive
their joys and inspira-
tions from the lesson of
liberty taught by the Fes-
tival of Freedom.
This festival serves to
Unify families, to mold
them together in dedica-
tion to the idea of justice,-
and to hold aloft the ban-
ners of highest idealist
inherent in mankind's
striving to destroy all fet-
ters' and all semblances
of servility.
It is not for Jewry
alone that Passover em-
phasizes the libertarian
appeal. It is in its uni-
versality that the holi-
d a y assumes immense
proportions.
It is in this spirit that
we rejoice on Passover,
that we go to the Seder
table with the -determina-
tion to hold on to our
freedoms, to labor to the
end that those in want
should receive the sup-
port that is due to hu-
man b eings, so that
liberty, proclaimed in
our traditions, should be-
come the heritage of all
peoples.

Time for Communal Dedication

We are in the midst of a great campaign aimed at
assuring the continuation of all communal services and
uninterrupted aid to needy overseas and assistance to
those who must escape from their present homes to find
haven in Israel.
The Allied Jewish Campaign currently appeals to
us to provide the large sums that are needed to assure
that the proper support will be given to the more than
50 agencies that are to benefit from the drive.
As we prepare to participate in the Passover Sed-
orim, it is urgent that we should take into account our
responsibilities.
While rejoicing over the idea of freedom inherent
in Passover, let us take into account the duty of each one
of us to make liberty a reality also for those who do not
now possess it.
And while striving to provide the necessary relief for
the dispossessed and humiliated in many lands, through
the United Jewish Appeal—the major beneficiary of the
Allied Jewish Campaign—let us remember the lesson of
Passover, which admonishes us to be aware of our status
as Jews. Awareness of our position involves acceptance
of duties towards our schools, towards _the health and
recreational services—the Community Center and Sinai
Hospital; to the older people in the Home of the Aged;
to the national agencies which serve us through their
educational, health and recreational planning.
Let there be a new dedication to our major fund-
raising effort—the Allied Jewish Campaign—as we com-
mence - the observance of Passover, and let us make a
reality of our declarations that we seek freedom, knowl-
edge and security for all.

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