Purim Celebration

Last term the Women’s Connect group did a study on the book of Esther using the ‘Swedish Study Method’.  Esther is one of only two books named for women (Ruth is the other) and while God’s presence is clear throughout the book His name does not appear. 

At the end of the study, we decided to celebrate in the same way the Jewish people did all those years ago – and still do to this day – with a Purim feast. The Jewish people celebrate the Feast of Esther and the holiday of Purim annually on the fourteenth and fifteenth days of the month of Adar (March).  They observe the days with feasting and joy and giving presents of food to one another and gifts to the poor.  One of the traditions of Purim is the reading of the Megillah, also known as the Book of Esther, which recounts the story of the Purim miracle. When Haman’s name is mentioned in the reading, children twirl graggers (noisemakers) and adults stamp their feet to eradicate his evil name. It is also customary for children (and adults if they desire) to dress up in costumes. 

Purim was established to remember Esther’s intercession and the victory of the Jewish people over Haman. The Jews took it upon themselves to establish the custom that they and their descendants and all who join them should without fail observe these days every year. These days should be remembered and observed in every generation by every family and in every province and in every city. (Esther 9:28)

We sat down at a table decorated by Robyn and feasted on a shared meal consisting of Verity’s delicious soup, Panida’s famous spring rolls, party pies, Stephany’s spinach and ricotta triangles, Michelle’s yummy roast pumpkin and Rhonda’s delicious cannoli.  To top it off Lois made some Hamantaschen (Haman’s pockets or Haman’s ears), a traditional Purim party snack. 

A pile of cookies with jam

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After our meal we watched a video from The Bible Project on the book of Esther.  

For a bit of fun, Lois provided the music and taught us some Jewish dance steps: the Mayim (which Jamie and some of the men once demonstrated for us) and Kelzmer. This was a truly wonderful celebration which we all enjoyed sharing.

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