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Can I invite a non-Jew to a Passover seder?


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Rabbi Shlomo Chein: Welcome. I'll be with you in a moment...what's on your mind?

Effi: Are you allowed to have non-Jews over on Passover for the Seder?

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: it is problematic to invite a non-jew to any holiday meal (it has to do with the laws of cooking on Holidays)

Effi: if you don't mind me asking, how so?

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: hmm. how do i sum this up in short....

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: Unlike Shabbat, a Jew may actually cook on the holiday; however, there are restrictions limiting the person to only cook what is needed for that day. One of the restricition are to only cook for people who are obligated to observe the holiday. However since a non jew is not, you may not cook for him -- because he can very well cook for himself!

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: so it is problematic to invite a non jew lest you cook or warm up some food for the meal for him, or because there is another person there (him being the other person)

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: it is, however, permitted to invite a non-jew to a Shabbat meal -- because it is altogether forbidden to cook on Shabbat

Effi: okay i sort of understand that

Effi: thank you for your time

Rabbi Shlomo Chein: sure - pleasure

All names, places, and identifying information have been changed or deleted in order to protect the privacy of the questioners. In order to preserve authenticity, the chat sessions have been posted with a minimum of editing. Please excuse typographical errors, missing punctuation, and/or grammatical mistakes which naturally occur in the course of informal chat sessions.


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Inviting a non-Jew to a Seder

Posted by: Dvoire, Plantation, FL on Sep 30, 2006

A very close friend of mine, the daughter of a very learned rabbi, once told me that it is very easy for a rabbi to say that someting is forbidden; that a smart rabbi figures out a way to do something if that something will actually result in a mitzva.

My husband's friend (Jewish) is married to a non-Jew. They are raising their son to be a Christian. They recently took in their niece (Jewish) after her mother died. When Passover came I invited the entire family to my home. The little girl was delighted, the boy was intrigued, and my husband's friend is now beinning to explore his Jewish heritage. I think that was a mitzva.

Editor's Comment

You bring up a very good point. Though Rabbi Chein quotes the law correctly, every individual case must be examined on its own merits by a qualified rabbi. A rabbi *might* find a specific difference in a particular scenario which would result in a slightly different Halachic ruling.


Holidays » General Information » Holiday Information
Holidays » Passover » Seder » About

(pl: Shabbatot). Hebrew word meaning "rest." It is a Biblical commandment to sanctify and rest on Saturday, the seventh day of the week. This commemorates the fact that after creating the world in six days, G-d rested on the seventh.
A Biblically mandated early-spring festival celebrating the Jewish exodus from Egypt in the year 1312 BCE.
Festive meal eaten on the first two nights of the holiday of Passover (In Israel, the Seder is observed only the first night of the holiday). Seder highlights include: reading the story of the Exodus, eating Matzah and bitter herbs, and drinking four cups of wine.