Held at the Jewish Museum, among the guests were Western Cape Premier Helen Zille, executive chairperson of Sekunjalo Dr Iqbal Survé, Muslim and Christian clerics, and Judge Dennis Davis, who was the MC.
Usually a 2 000-year-old family and community celebration rich in religious symbolism of the Hebrews’ exodus from captivity in ancient Egypt, SAJBD deputy director Gwynne Robins said: “We decided to share our tradition with others because there are lots of things we say in the Seder that are relevant to us today.
“We say all who are hungry come and eat, there’s so much hunger, famine in Somalia, there are people in Khayelitsha who go to bed hungry, we must remember a time of hunger in our history.
“We talk of being refugees; there are lots of refugees in South Africa and all over the world, from North Africa. There are so many problems. The point of the Haggadah book, which means 'telling', is that you shall tell your children what the Lord God did for us on that day of fleeing from Egypt. Education is important, part of this Seder,” said Robins.
The choice of speakers epitomised the spirit of social consciousness and reflected the 10 important defining moments of the Haggadah.
Sheila Gastrow, who started Inyathelo as a support for NGOs, spoke of the importance in doing outreach and social upliftment.
David Bilchitz of the Wits Law School spoke on the importance of education. A refugee speaker and a Rwandan genocide survivor also spoke.