On Thursday evening I participated in the Anti-Defamation League’s “Nation of Immigrants” Community Seder that took place at The Castle at Park Plaza in Boston.
Last year I gave a speech to the Jewish community in which I told them about a Seder meal that I organized in Washington with the Hispanic Community many years ago. In response to my talk, this year the ADL has organized a multicultural Seder inviting many ethnic and religious groups. Andrew Tarsy, ADL regional director and Diane Rosenbaum, Senior Associate Director did a wonderful job organizing the event. It was a lovely evening.
Andrew Tarsy, ADL regional director and Cardinal Seán Patrick O'Malley of Boston
The booklets explained each step of the ritual.
Cardinal Seán Patrick O'Malley of Boston eating Matzah
Cardinal Seán Patrick O'Malley of Boston passes the bitter herbs
Cardinal Seán Patrick O'Malley of Boston announcing that Benedict XVI has named Rabbi Leon Klenicki of the ADL to the Papal Order of St. Gregory
"... just as it would be a mortal sin now for anyone, in making a profession of faith, to say that Christ is yet to be born, which the fathers of old said devoutly and truthfully; so too it would be a mortal sin now to observe those ceremonies which the fathers of old fulfilled with devotion and fidelity." (St. Thomas, Summa Theologica I, II, q. 103, Art. 4)
(8) Let me also say this to those who are our own-if I must call our own those who side with the Jews. Go to the synagogues and see if the Jews have changed their fast; see if they kept the pre-Paschal fast with us; see if they have taken food on that day. But theirs is not a fast; it is a transgression of the law, it is a sin, it is trespassing. Yet they did not change. But you did change your glory and from it you will derive no profit; you did go over to their rites.
(9) Did the Jews ever observe our pre-Paschal fast? Did they ever join us in keeping the feast of the martyrs? Did they ever share with us the day of the Epiphanies? They do not run to the truth, but you rush to transgression. I call it a transgression because their observances do not occur at the proper time. Once there was a proper time when they had to follow those observances, but now there is not. That is why what was once according to the Law is now opposed to it. (St. John Chrysostom, Homily IV, Against the Jews and the Trumpets of their Pasch)
However condemning these words from two Doctors of the Church may be, they don't fully exemplify the magnitude of the offense. These Seders taking place in so many Catholic parishes are not the same Passover ceremony celebrated by Christ as it is dishonestly claimed. These ceremonies are a counterfeit, like everything in rabbinic Judaism. There are Talmudic benedictions and rituals in these Seders which were formulated after Christ and therefore have no place in the Biblical tradition, before or after Christ. These Seders incorporate ritual which was formulated by rabbis of a "religion" founded upon the rejection of Jesus Christ. It would be less offensive to bring Hindu rituals into the Church for at least Hinduism isn't based in conscious rejection of Christ.