Tikvat Israel Congregation

A Friendly, Participatory, Egalitarian Conservative Synagogue in Rockville, MD


Pesach 2023/5783 Begins Sundown on Wednesday, April 5

Dear Friends,

As we begin the Hebrew month of Nisan today, we are pleased to present to you our complete guide to Passover 5783. In this email you will find links to sell your chametz, sign-up for home hospitality and our guides for preparing your home for Pesach. I’m frequently asked whether certain foods require a kosher for Passover certification. I’m pleased to share with you this guide from the OU on foods that do NOT need special certification.

As we begin reading from the book of Leviticus this week, we shift from the great drama and narrative of the stories in Exodus to the detailed descriptions of the various sacrifices offered in the mishkan and, later, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. If our ancestors had only focused on these details, thinking that correctly offering sacrifices is the ikar (essence) of Judaism, I don’t think Judaism’s message would have been compelling enough to keep our people together in the diaspora for nearly 2000 years. On the other hand, if we only had Exodus and did not have structure to our worship, the dispersion would have created dozens of branches of Judaism that would not be recognizably related to one another. The key is in finding the balance.

I think the same is true as we prepare for Pesach. It is easy to get caught up in all the details of cleaning and making sure everything is kosher. All of this is important, as it not only assures that we are keeping the holiday, but allows us to invite others into our homes and build community. However, if all we think about during this time period is the cooking and cleaning, we can lose out on the true meaning of the holiday. We did not escape slavery in Egypt just to make sure our houses were clean and our food kosher. Our experience with slavery was designed to compel us to empathize with those who still lack freedom, recognizing the strangers in our midst and working to create a more just world. 

I hope that as you prepare for this year’s seder, in addition to cleaning, shopping, and cooking, that you also take time to think about what you and the people at your seder could be doing to help bring about more freedom for people in our community, our nation, and throughout the world.

Wishing you and you family a Chag Kasher V’sameach, a joyful and meaningful Passover,

Rabbi Marc Israel

Service Times & General Information

Wednesday, April 5
Shacharit7 am
Siyyum7:45 am
Breakfast8 am
Last Chametz11:03 am
Candle Lighting7:17 pm
Thursday, April 6
Pesach Festival Service10 am
Seder7 pm
Candle Lighting8:17 pm
Friday, April 7
Pesach Festival Service10 am
Kabbalat Shabbat
6 pm
Candle Lighting7:19 pm
Saturday, April 8
Shabbat Chol HaMoed10 am
8:20 pm
Sunday, April 9
In-Person & Zoom
9 am
7:30 pm
Monday, April 10
8 am
7:30 pm
Tuesday, April 11
8 am
Candle Lighting7:23 pm
Festival Ma’ariv
7:30 pm
Wednesday, April 12
Pesach Festival Service10 am
Festival Ma’ariv
7:30 pm
Candle Lighting8:24 pm
Thursday, April 13
Pesach Festival Service
Yizkor will be at 11:15 am
10 am
Ma’ariv/Havdalah8:25 pm

For complete information on preparing for Passover, please read The Rabbinical Assembly’s Annual Passover Guide for 2023/5783.

Shacharit/Siyyum Bechorim is on Wednesday, April 5. Shacharit will begin at 7 am, followed by Siyyum at 7:45 am and breakfast at 8 am. 

All services will be available in-person and on Livestream, except where noted as on Zoom. You may also wish to print out the guide to Service Times (including candle-lighting and all home rituals), which includes links for online services, so you have it available for reference.

TI Pesach Guide

Preparing for Pesach can be a daunting task. This guide is meant to make the process less intimidating and to answer common questions about getting ready for the holiday. For more complete information, you can also consult the Rabbinical Assembly Pesach Guide.

If you need clarification on anything in this document, please consult with Rabbi Israel.

Sell Your Chametz through TI

If you would like TI to help sell your chametz, please complete this form online, or print it out and return to TI, by Monday, April 3.

It is customary at this season to donate money, meot chitim, to feed the hungry. The funds we collect are distributed to local Jewish and non-Jewish charities. To donate online, please log into your ShulCloud account and pay by card or bill to your account; you can also send a check to the TI office with “meot chitim” in the memo line.

Home Hospitality: Host or Be Hosted

In order to ensure that we fulfill the mandate of the Hagaddah “Let all who are hungry come eat,” we seek hosts and guests to join in in-person or on-line seders. A couple, family or individual can volunteer to serve as host and use Zoom or another virtual platform to bring in guests who aren’t able to attend a seder with others. A couple, family or individual can volunteer to serve as host for an in person seder. If you would like to host or be hosted, please complete this form by March 30.

Request Extra Haggadot for Your Seder

We have a collection of haggadot in the Flax Library that you may borrow for your sedarim. Please stop by the TI office before Tuesday, April 4, to see what is available. Many families use several different haggadot, so feel free to mix it up!

Happy Passover!