Wednesday, April 28, 2010

PESACH SHENI

Today is the 14th of Iyar, 5770 (29 days of Omer. 4 weeks, 1 day)

Thirty days after Pesach we commemorate Pesach Sheni or The Second Pesach. Pesach Sheni is not a formal holiday. No resting from melakha (work, etc) or Kiddush , etc is commanded today.
Pesach Sheni is mentioned in the Torah in Bamidbar 9:1-14 when Moshe announced that the Korban Pesach (Pesach sacrifice, a lamb) may only be offered by people who are ritually pure. Men came to Moses, complaining that some people, who came into contact with a dead body, were ritually unclean. God then indicated Moshe that anyone who was unable to offer the Korban Pesach on its due time, the 14th of Nisan, due to defilement or inability to journey to the place of sacrifice in time, would perform the sacrifice on the 14th of Iyar, a full month later.
In modern times, there is no practical observance of Pesach Sheni because baravonotenu haRabbim, after the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem we are unable to perform the Pesach sacrifice anyway.
In our community, and in most communities, we remember Pesach Sheni by 1. Eating Matza, which symbolizes the Korban Pesach, some time during the day saying mezonot not hamotzi for it. There is no minimum requirement of Matza to eat and we can also eat regularly Chametz. 2. Saying yehi shem instead of the regular viduy (or confession, is a prayer which is suspended on joyous occasions) from Mincha of the previous day.