The 14th of Iyar commemorates Pesach Sheni, “the second Passover.” In the first year of their journey through the desert, the Jews were commanded to offer the Paschal sacrifice. Now there were several individuals who were ritually impure and thus unfit to bring that offering. When Moses communicated this command, they were devastated. They could not bear the thought that the entire Jewish people would bring a sacrifice and they would be left out. And so they complained to Moses and Moses brought their complaint before G‑d.

G‑d responded mercifully, telling the people that they could offer the same sacrifice again a month later. And then, He stated that this would be an eternal decree: A person would always be given a second chance. Even if someone was impure or far away from the Temple on Passover — and even if he had intentionally brought himself to that state — he would always be able to compensate and bring a sacrifice on the 14th of Iyar. As the Rebbe Rayatz was wont to say, “Pesach Sheni teaches that it’s never too late; one can always correct and make amends.’

In our time, Pesach Sheni is recalled even by those who observed Passover. It can be explained that Pesach Sheni is for a Jew who falls back into Egypt even after he has celebrated liberation. As our Rabbis have said : “It took G‑d one day to take the Jews out of Egypt, but 40 years to take Egypt out of the Jews.”

It is possible to have had a liberating experience on Passover, but then to return to the doldrums of one’s spiritual Egypt. Even such a person need not despair. Nothing is forever lost and it’s never too late. There is always a second Passover.