Overheard in the parking lot: “Are you bringing your daughter home from seminary for Pesach?”
“No, she’s staying. It’s too expensive and the year is almost over. What about your daughter?”
“I’m bringing Dena home for Pesach. When her sister was in Israel, it was a nightmare finding a place for the second Seder.”
We all know that residents of chutz la’aretz who are in Eretz Yisrael for Pesach keep a second day of yom tov. What we may not realize until we send our own children, is that this halachic paradox leaves our kids scrambling for a family with whom to celebrate a second Seder, because the families that usually host them for Shabbos are already in chol hamoed mode.
So what’s the most valuable commodity to a yeshiva boy or seminary girl this time of year?
Answer: A family from the U.S. visiting Israel for Pesach.
Is this you?
If it is, many young people would love to know about you. You could do an enormous chessed by letting them know you’re coming and that you’d love to have them join your Pesach Seder.
“Kol ditzrich yeisei v’yifsach,” we say at the start of our Seder. Well, believe it or not, our kids are needy. And, boy, will they appreciate a family that will include them and make them feel at home—or at least a lot less far away from home!
HOSST—Hospitality at the Second Seder Table—is a new service to match families traveling to Israel for Pesach (or already residing there temporarily) with students or other young singles in Israel who are keeping two days of yom tov.
If you can host one or more students at your second Seder (preferably at least two, since students prefer to come with a friend), or if you’re a student in Israel and need to be hosted, (or if your son or daughter needs a place,) e-mail: email@example.com. (That’s with two s’s.)
You’ll immediately receive a link to a short questionnaire to fill out and submit, one for guests, one for hosts.
When we have a suggestion that seems to fit a student’s request, we’ll send them the host’s contact information, and they can contact the potential host.
For everyone’s safety, both students and hosts will be requested to provide one reference, preferably a family rav, that the other party can check into.
The thoughtful families who offer hospitality at their Seders can make a huge difference in the simchas yom tov for the young men and women studying in Eretz Yisrael. And your chessed is sure to make your trip to Israel this Pesach that much more meaningful. v