Reflections on the Shalom Bayit Seder
On April 8, 2015, we held our 11th annual Shalom Bayit Women’s Passover Seder. Twenty-two women gathered for a lovely Seder meal, guided by the “Journey Toward Freedom: a Haggadah for Survivors of Domestic Violence.” This year, once again, I was moved by the powerful women gathering to retell the story of Jews’ exodus from Egyptian slavery, while reflecting on their own struggles for liberation from daily intimidation, fear, violence and abuse in those places which should be the most peaceful and loving…their homes and intimate relationships.
Sharing the Seder meal and reflecting on personal journeys toward freedom, women joined in solidarity and strength, as our interfaith Seder focused on obtaining freedom from lives of personal enslavement. Each year, as women bond with each other and reflect on the ways in which Shalom Bayit has strengthened them, and provided a space of safety, I am touched and reminded of the power of presence, listening, solidarity and advocacy.
I reflect on our Shalom Bayit Passover prayer, “This night when we celebrate the miracle of liberation, it is incumbent upon us to grasp the meaning of this enslavement, to hear their cries, and to aid their struggle for liberation. We each have a role to play in working toward freedom from abuse. “