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Jewish Western New Yorkers are taking Passover Seders virtual

Coronavirus forces changes for Seders
Posted at 4:48 AM, Apr 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-07 07:04:18-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Wednesday night, all around Western New York, Jewish people will mark the first night of Passover with a traditional Seder.

The Seder includes a festive meal and retelling the story of the Jews being liberated from Egyptian slavery.

Normally, you'd celebrate with friends and family, a big festive meal and a few glasses of wine.

But this year is a little different.

With the coronavirus pandemic forcing us to distance ourselves socially, some Jewish people are taking their celebration to Zoom. That includes Rob Goldberg, the CEO at the Buffalo Jewish Federation.

Goldberg says he's going to have a 30 minute Seder with his out of town family, with special theatrics for the kids.

"My wife and I, we're going to do something very special for the story," Goldberg said. That includes wearing a Pharaoh face mask. "So I'm going to be Pharaoh when we retell the story of our ancestors' liberation from bondage on their way to freedom," Goldberg said.

But the story of Passover is a bit ironic this year, considering the coronavirus, social isolation and how Jews long ago did all they could to battle ten plagues and even death. Goldberg says many people are saying the coronavirus is the 11th plague.

"We look forward to a time when it passes, so we can emerge from our homes to freedom; where can no longer be socially distant with each other but rather socially intimate," Goldberg said.

Passover starts tomorrow night at sundown. A second Seder and festive meal will be held on Thursday night.

For resources to take your Seder digital, you can click here.