Extra security for Birmingham area Passover week events - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Extra security for Birmingham area Passover week events

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A shooting at a Jewish community center in Kansas City, Mo. has some concerned over safety during Passover Seders this week in Birmingham. (abc3340.com) A shooting at a Jewish community center in Kansas City, Mo. has some concerned over safety during Passover Seders this week in Birmingham. (abc3340.com)
BIRMINGHAM - AL -

A focus of Passover observances is the Seder dinner, which marks the Israelites' exodus from slavery in Egypt. Security and safety were important elements for some people attending Passover Seders.

"The Seder this evening is all about celebrating the exodus from Egypt," Rabbi Laila Haas, Temple Emanu-El.

Members of Birmingham's Temple Emanu-El gathered for first Seder.

"We have different symbols on a Seder plate," Rabbi Haas said. "We have an egg which represents Springtime, parsley which is about rebirth and renewal and Spring and you dip it into the salt water which represents the tears of the Israelites."

"It's a struggle without bread for a whole week but it's also about family and how we are here today because of what happened during Passover," Ella Rosenthal, who attended Seder said.

While Mondays service is a celebration, it's also marked with sadness - mourning the loss of a boy and his grandfather and another woman killed at a Jewish community center near Kansas City.

"It's terrifying and it's sad," Erin Arnold, who attended Seder said. "Once again you're reminded that you're not 100% safe even within your community." 

'There are no miles of separation for as one community, our hearts and sympathies are mingled," Rabbi Haas said.

Because of that tragedy, officers watched the doors of the temple. The Jewish Community Center has stepped up its security too.

"This facility is in regular contact over the past 24 hours with local and national law enforcement to insure our membership is protected and feels comfortable coming here," Daniel Odrezin, Birmingham Jewish Federation said.

On this first night of Passover, they're praying for peace.

"At the end of our Seder, we will recite the words, 'next year in Jerusalem.' It is those words that we hope and pray that at this time next season and this time next Passover, that we will see a world of peace."

 

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