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Last Days of Passover

Last Days of Passover

Final Freedom


It had been six days since we walked out on our Egyptian taskmasters, but our liberation was not yet complete. Not until the seventh night, when the Sea of Reeds parted for us—and then crashed down to utterly destroy our Egyptian pursuers. Only then did we feel our chains fall away forever.

We relive that taste of ultimate freedom on the seventh and eighth days of Passover.

Holiday Observances:

Light holiday candles on both nights, and make kiddush and have festive meals on both nights and both days.1 We don’t go to work, drive, write or switch on or off electric devices. We are permitted to cook and to carry outdoors (except on Shabbat).

Splitting the sea wasn’t just a spectacular scene; it was a clear vision of a deeper cosmic order

First Night:

Splitting the sea wasn’t just a spectacular scene; it was a clear vision of a deeper cosmic order. Many relive the experience by staying up tonight with friends, studying Torah and absorbing the holiness of the night.

First Day:

We read the Sea of Reeds story from the Torah, and the song of praise we sang afterward. All rise when the song is read.

Second Night:

Some have the custome to light a 24-hour yahrtzeit candle for a deceased parent. (If the first day is Shabbat, make sure to light only after dark.) Light from a pre-existing flame.

Second Day:

Yizkor during the morning service.

On the final day of Passover, there is special focus on the final liberation, the one that’s yet to happen (as of this printing). The haftorah is a classic prophecy of that era. To celebrate, the Baal Shem Tov would make a festive meal, which he called the Feast of Moshiach. You can bet your local Chabad center will be hosting one, replete with matzah and four cups of wine. It usually starts shortly before sunset.

It takes some time to repurchase the chametz that was sold for Passover. Hold out just one more hour after nightfall before eating any chametz.

Note: In contrast to all other festivals, the Shehecheyanu blessing is not recited on the holiday candles or the kiddush on the last days of Passover.
Illustrations by Yehuda Lang. To view more artwork by this artist, click here.
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Jerome Krasnow Connecticut via April 16, 2017

Why Moshiach fails to arrive Before Moshiach arrives Elijah is supposed to come before. Yet every year millions of Jews invite him to take a dip of wine at Seders. A drunk Elijah fails to remember this duty as he struggles with a hang over that lasts a year! If only we would stop getting Elijah drunk Mosiach could arrive! Reply

Anonymous April 8, 2015

This is very helpful! Thanks for posting it! Reply

Rabbi Shmary Brownstein April 11, 2013

To Richard We will know the Messiah has arrived when, as Maimonides teaches, a Jewish leader will successfully rebuild the Temple and return all Jews to Israel, reinstating Torah law fully. More generally, the time of the Messiah will be one of peace and of humanity striving to come closer to G-d. These shifts within humanity will be obvious to all. The age of the Messiah is G-d's ultimate vision for the world, and He wants it more than we do. He would not promise it to us if we were incapable of achieving it. The best way to prepare for and bring the Messiah is by living now as much as we can as we will live then: with greater commitment to Torah observance, focusing on learning about and serving G-d, and living in ways of pleasantness and peace. Reply

Richard Ft. Lauderdale April 2, 2013

As for the Messiah's Meal, how will we know when the Messiah comes? Will it be with a full Hollywood production of special effects (I do not say this cynically), or will it be more moderate, or as the prophet said a child born to a young maiden? How will we know? Has the Messiah come yet and we didn't recognize the fact? Do we humans have to prepare the way better than we have? Are we capable of being so up righteous as to ever have hopes of living in the Messianich Age? Are we asking too much of a Messiah since we humans have taken G-d's creation for granted? Reply Staff via March 31, 2013

Tefillin on Chol Hamoed It depends on the customs you follow, please see Do I Put On Tefillin During Chol Hamoed? for information Reply

Anonymous Boca Raton, Fl March 31, 2013

tefillin does one put on tefillin on chol hamoed pesach? Reply

Anonymous Ft. Lauderdale, fl April 13, 2012

Yizkor candle lighting prayer(s) ? first of all, thank you Mrs. Chana Banjaminson for ansering my Yizkor question. my next question is what, if any, prayer(s) are recited when lighting the Yizkor candle (in memory of my father of blessed memory?)

Thank you in advance, and Shabbat Shalom. Reply

Mrs. Chana Benjaminson via April 12, 2012

Yizkor This year (2012) Yizkor is said on Shabbat, the 14th of April. A yahrtzeit candle is lit on Friday evening, before Shabbat starts. For Shabbat times in your location please see Reply

Anonymous Ft. Lauderdale, FL April 12, 2012

Yiskor Cannot find the dates for Yiskor this year. Can you tell me where to find the information? Reply

Yohanon Miami, FL/USA April 10, 2012

And then ME-MU-NAH !! Which is how the Moroccan community celebrates the end of Pesach, with a special thin "bread" often coated with butter, margarine, or homey (or a combination thereof). This year memunah is Motze Shabat everywhere.
B'tay_a_von! Reply