(10) As the cloud withdrew from the Tent, there was Miriam stricken with snow-white scales! When Aaron turned toward Miriam, he saw that she was stricken with scales. (11) And Aaron said to Moses, “O my lord, account not to us the sin which we committed in our folly. (12) Let her not be as one dead, who emerges from his mother’s womb with half his flesh eaten away.” (13) So Moses cried out to the Eternal, saying, “O God, pray heal her!”
(26) He said, “If you will heed the Eternal your God diligently, doing what is upright in God's sight, giving ear to God's commandments and keeping all God's laws, then I will not bring upon you any of the diseases that I brought upon the Egyptians, for I the Eternal am your healer.”
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם
אֲשֶׁר יָצַר אֶת הָאָדָם בְּחָכְמָה
וּבָרָא בוֹ נְקָבִים נְקָבִים חֲלוּלִים חֲלוּלִים.
גָּלוּי וְיָדוּעַ לִפְנֵי כִסֵּא כְבוֹדֶךָ
שֶׁאִם יִפָּתֵחַ אֶחָד מֵהֶם אוֹ יִסָּתֵם אֶחָד מֵהֶם
אִי אֶפְשַׁר לְהִתְקַיֵּם וְלַעֲמוֹד לְפָנֶיךָ.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה רוֹפֵא כָל בָּשָׂר
Blessed are You, God, our God, sovereign of the universe, who formed humans with wisdom and created within us many openings and many hollows.
It is obvious in the presence of your glorious throne that if one of them were ruptured, or if one of them were blocked, it would be impossible to exist and stand in your presence.
Blessed are You, God, who heals all flesh and performs wonders
(א) רְפָאֵנוּ ה' וְנֵרָפֵא. הושִׁיעֵנוּ וְנִוָּשֵׁעָה כִּי תְהִלָּתֵנוּ אָתָּה. וְהַעֲלֵה רְפוּאָה שְׁלֵמָה לְכָל מַכּותֵינוּ.
(ב) תפילה בעד החולה: יְהִי רָצון מִלְּפָנֶיךָ ה' אֱלהַי וֵאלהֵי אֲבותַי. שֶׁתִּשְׁלַח מְהֵרָה רְפוּאָה שְׁלֵמָה מִן הַשָּׁמַיִם. רְפוּאַת הַנֶּפֶשׁ וּרְפוּאַת הַגּוּף לְחולֶה פב"פ בְּתוךְ שְׁאָר חולֵי יִשרָאֵל:
(ג) כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ רופֵא נֶאֱמָן וְרַחֲמָן אָתָּה. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', רופֵא חולֵי עַמּו יִשרָאֵל:
(1) Heal us, O God, and we shall be healed, save us and we shall be saved, for You are our praise. Bring complete healing to all our wounds,
(2) (Prayer for a sick person: May it be Your will in front of You, O Eternal, my God and the God of my ancestors, that You quickly send a complete recovery from the Heavens - a recovery of the soul and a recovery of the body - to the the sick person, insert name, the son/daughter of insert mother's name, among the other sick ones of Israel.)
(3) for You are God and Sovereign, the faithful and merciful healer. Blessed are You, O God, Who heals the sick of Your people Israel.
מִי שֶׁבֵּרַךְ אֲבותֵינוּ אַבְרָהָם יִצְחָק וְיַעֲקב משֶׁה וְאַהֲרן דָּוִד וּשְׁלמה הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת הַחולָה פב"פ בַּעֲבוּר שפב"פ נודֵר צְדָקָה בַּעֲבוּרָהּ, בִּשכַר זֶה הַקָּדושׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא יִמָלֵא רַחֲמִים עָלֶיהָ לְהַחֲלִימָהּ וּלְרַפְּאתָהּ וּלְהַחֲזִיקָהּ וּלְהַחֲיותָהּ, וְיִשְׁלַח לָהּ מְהֵרָה רְפוּאָה שְׁלֵמָה מִן הַשָּׁמַיִם לְכָל אֵבָרֶיהּ וּלְכָל גִּידֶיהָ בְּתוךְ שְׁאָר חולֵי יִשרָאֵל, רְפוּאַת הַנֶּפֶשׁ וּרְפוּאַת הַגּוּף בשבת: שַׁבָּת הִיא מִלִזְּעוק וּרְפוּאָה קְרובָה לָבוא. ביו"ט: יום טוב הוא מִלְזּעוק וּרְפוּאָה קְרובָה לָבוא, הַשְׁתָּא בַּעֲגָלָא וּבִזְמַן קָרִיב. וְנאמַר אָמֵן:
For a Woman:
May the one who blessed our ancestors, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Moses and Aaron, David and Solomon bless [First Name, daughter of Mother's Name], for which [name of person asking for the prayer] vows to give charity for her sake. As reward for this, may the Holy One, Blessed Be God, be filled with mercy for her, to heal her and to strengthen her and to enliven her, and quickly send her a complete healing from heaven to all her limbs and organs, among the other sick of Israel, a healing of the spirit and a healing of the body. On Shabbat: On Shabbat we do not cry out, and healing will soon come. Now, speedily, and in a time soon to come, and let us say, Amen.
(א) ברכת הגומל: בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעולָם. הַגּומֵל לְחַיָּבִים טובות. שֶׁגְּמָלַנִי כָּל טוב:
Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Ruler of the universe, who has bestowed every goodness upon me.
(ב) הקהל עונה אמן. ואומרים:
מִי שֶׁגְּמָלְךָ טוב. הוּא יִגְמָלְךָ כָּל טוב סֶלָה:
[The community respond with ]Amen! May the One who has bestowed goodness on you continue to bestow goodness upon you forever!
(א) הַשְׁכִּיבֵנוּ ה' אֱלהֵינוּ לְשָׁלום, וְהַעֲמִידֵנוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ לְחַיִּים. וּפְרוש עָלֵינוּ סֻכַּת שְׁלומֶךָ. וְתַקְּנֵנוּ בְּעֵצָה טובָה מִלְּפָנֶיךָ. וְהושִׁיעֵנוּ לְמַעַן שְׁמֶךָ. וְהָגֵן בַּעֲדֵנוּ: וְהָסֵר מֵעָלֵינוּ אויֵב דֶבֶר וְחֶרֶב וְרָעָב וְיָגון. וְהָסֵר שטָן מִלְפָנֵינוּ וּמֵאַחֲרֵינוּ. וּבְצֵל כְּנָפֶיךָ תַּסְתִּירֵנוּ. כִּי אֵל שׁומְרֵנוּ וּמַצִּילֵנוּ אָתָּה. כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ חַנּוּן וְרַחוּם אָתָּה: וּשְׁמור צֵאתֵנוּ וּבואֵנוּ לְחַיִים וּלְשָׁלום מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עולָם: בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' שׁומֵר עַמּו יִשרָאֵל לָעַד:
Lie us down to peace, Adonai our God, and raise us up to life, our sovereign , and spread over us the shelter of your peace, and direct us with good counsel before You, and save us for the sake of your name, and look out for us, and keep enemies, plagues swords, famines, and troubles from our midst, and remove Satan from in front of us and from behind us, and cradle us in the shadow of your wings, for You are God who guards us and saves us, for You are God. Our gracious and merciful sovereign. Guard our going out and our coming to life and to peace, from now and ever more.
(On Weekdays) Blessed are You, Adonai, who guards your People Israel forever.
Beit Yosef, Orech Chaim 236
In the Talmud, Rabbi Yochanan says that one needs to follow the evening G'ulah directly with the evening T'filah. We might see Hashkiveinu as a pause, but instead we should see it as an extension of the G'ulah. We should view it just like the preface "Adonai S'fatai, Open my lips," which was instituted as a part of the T'filah. We see Hashkiveinu as an extension of the G'ulah in that when God plagued Egypt, he caused a great fear upon the people [amidst the darkness]. They prayed to the Holy One, that the Angel of Death would not come to their houses to inflict death upon them. Hashkiveinu is a reminder of the fear the Israelites faced during the time of redemption; therefore it is a part of the G'ulah
(2) Happy is the one who is thoughtful of the wretched; in bad times may the Eternal keep them from harm. (3) May the Eternal guard them and preserve them; and may they be thought happy in the land. Do not subject them to the will of their enemies. (4) The Eternal will sustain them on their sickbed; You shall wholly transform their bed of suffering. (5) I said, “O Adonai, have mercy on me, heal me, for I have sinned against You.” (6) My enemies speak evilly of me, “When will he die and his name perish?” (7) If one comes to visit, he speaks falsely; his mind stores up evil thoughts; once outside, he speaks them. (8) All my enemies whisper together against me, imagining the worst for me.
(א) לַמְנַצֵּ֣חַ בִּ֭נְגִינוֹת עַֽל־הַשְּׁמִינִ֗ית מִזְמ֥וֹר לְדָוִֽד׃ (ב) יְֽהוָ֗ה אַל־בְּאַפְּךָ֥ תוֹכִיחֵ֑נִי וְֽאַל־בַּחֲמָתְךָ֥ תְיַסְּרֵֽנִי׃ (ג) חָנֵּ֥נִי יְהוָה֮ כִּ֤י אֻמְלַ֫ל אָ֥נִי רְפָאֵ֥נִי יְהוָ֑ה כִּ֖י נִבְהֲל֣וּ עֲצָמָֽי׃ (ד) וְ֭נַפְשִׁי נִבְהֲלָ֣ה מְאֹ֑ד ואת [וְאַתָּ֥ה] יְ֝הוָ֗ה עַד־מָתָֽי׃ (ה) שׁוּבָ֣ה יְ֭הוָה חַלְּצָ֣ה נַפְשִׁ֑י ה֝וֹשִׁיעֵ֗נִי לְמַ֣עַן חַסְדֶּֽךָ׃ (ו) כִּ֤י אֵ֣ין בַּמָּ֣וֶת זִכְרֶ֑ךָ בִּ֝שְׁא֗וֹל מִ֣י יֽוֹדֶה־לָּֽךְ׃ (ז) יָגַ֤עְתִּי ׀ בְּֽאַנְחָתִ֗י אַשְׂחֶ֣ה בְכָל־לַ֭יְלָה מִטָּתִ֑י בְּ֝דִמְעָתִ֗י עַרְשִׂ֥י אַמְסֶֽה׃ (ח) עָֽשְׁשָׁ֣ה מִכַּ֣עַס עֵינִ֑י עָֽ֝תְקָ֗ה בְּכָל־צוֹרְרָֽי׃ (ט) ס֣וּרוּ מִ֭מֶּנִּי כָּל־פֹּ֣עֲלֵי אָ֑וֶן כִּֽי־שָׁמַ֥ע יְ֝הוָ֗ה ק֣וֹל בִּכְיִֽי׃ (י) שָׁמַ֣ע יְ֭הוָה תְּחִנָּתִ֑י יְ֝הוָ֗ה תְּֽפִלָּתִ֥י יִקָּֽח׃ (יא) יֵבֹ֤שׁוּ ׀ וְיִבָּהֲל֣וּ מְ֭אֹד כָּל־אֹיְבָ֑י יָ֝שֻׁ֗בוּ יֵבֹ֥שׁוּ רָֽגַע׃
(1) -For the leader; with instrumental music on the sheminith. A psalm of David. (2) O Eternal, do not punish me in anger, do not chastise me in fury. (3) Have mercy on me, O Eternal, for I languish; heal me, O Eternal, for my bones shake with terror. (4) My whole being is stricken with terror, while You, Eternal —O, how long! (5) O Eternal, turn! Rescue me! Deliver me as befits Your faithfulness. (6) For there is no praise of You among the dead; in Sheol, who can acclaim You? (7) I am weary with groaning; every night I drench my bed, I melt my couch in tears. (8) My eyes are wasted by vexation, worn out because of all my foes. (9) Away from me, all you evildoers, for the Eternal heeds the sound of my weeping. (10) The Eternal heeds my plea, the Eternal accepts my prayer. (11) All my enemies will be frustrated and stricken with terror; they will turn back in an instant, frustrated.
(א) שִׁ֗יר לַֽמַּ֫עֲל֥וֹת אֶשָּׂ֣א עֵ֭ינַי אֶל־הֶהָרִ֑ים מֵ֝אַ֗יִן יָבֹ֥א עֶזְרִֽי׃ (ב) עֶ֭זְרִי מֵעִ֣ם יְהוָ֑ה עֹ֝שֵׂ֗ה שָׁמַ֥יִם וָאָֽרֶץ׃ (ג) אַל־יִתֵּ֣ן לַמּ֣וֹט רַגְלֶ֑ךָ אַל־יָ֝נ֗וּם שֹֽׁמְרֶֽךָ׃ (ד) הִנֵּ֣ה לֹֽא־יָ֭נוּם וְלֹ֣א יִישָׁ֑ן שׁ֝וֹמֵ֗ר יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (ה) יְהוָ֥ה שֹׁמְרֶ֑ךָ יְהוָ֥ה צִ֝לְּךָ֗ עַל־יַ֥ד יְמִינֶֽךָ׃ (ו) יוֹמָ֗ם הַשֶּׁ֥מֶשׁ לֹֽא־יַכֶּ֗כָּה וְיָרֵ֥חַ בַּלָּֽיְלָה׃ (ז) יְֽהוָ֗ה יִשְׁמָרְךָ֥ מִכָּל־רָ֑ע יִ֝שְׁמֹ֗ר אֶת־נַפְשֶֽׁךָ׃ (ח) יְֽהוָ֗ה יִשְׁמָר־צֵאתְךָ֥ וּבוֹאֶ֑ךָ מֵֽ֝עַתָּ֗ה וְעַד־עוֹלָֽם׃
(1) A song for ascents. I turn my eyes to the mountains; from where will my help come? (2) My help comes from the Eternal, maker of heaven and earth. (3) God will not let your foot give way; your guardian will not slumber; (4) See, the guardian of Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps! (5) The Eternal is your guardian, the Eternal is your protection at your right hand. (6) By day the sun will not strike you, nor the moon by night. (7) The Eternal will guard you from all harm; God will guard your life. (8) The Eternal will guard your going and coming now and forever.
(1) A song of ascents. Out of the depths I call You, O God. (2) O God, listen to my cry; let Your ears be attentive to my plea for mercy. (3) If You keep account of sins, O God, who will survive? (4) Yours is the power to forgive so that You may be held in awe. (5) I look to the Eternal; I look to God; I await God's word. (6) I am more eager for the Eternal than watchmen for the morning, watchmen for the morning. (7) O Israel, wait for the Eternal; for with the Eternal is steadfast love and great power to redeem. (8) It is God who will redeem Israel from all their iniquities.
(12) In the thirty-ninth year of his reign, Asa suffered from an acute foot ailment; but ill as he was, he still did not turn to the Eternal but to physicians. (13) Asa slept with his fathers. He died in the forty-first year of his reign
Hezekiah continued: I have received a tradition from the house of my father’s father, from King David, the founding father of the dynasty of kings of Judea: Even if a sharp sword rests upon a person’s neck, he should not prevent himself from praying for mercy. One may still hold out hope that his prayers will be answered, as was David himself when he saw the Angel of Destruction, but nonetheless prayed for mercy and his prayers were answered. (Berachot 10a)
Physicians Prayer (attributed to Maimonides)
PRAYER OF MAIMONIDES.
[paily prayer of a physician before visiting his patients, translated from a Hebrew manuscript of a celebrated Hebrew physician of the 12th century. Translation reprinted from Dr. Harry Frieden wald, Johns Hopkins Hospital Bulletin, August, 1917.]
Almighty God, You have created the human body with infinite wisdom. Ten thousand times ten thousand organs have You combined in it that act unceasingly and harmoniously to preserve the whole in all its beauty the body which is the envelope of the immortal soul. They are ever acting in perfect order, agreement and accord. Yet, when the frailty of matter or the unbridling of passion deranges this order or interrupts this accord, then the. forces clash and the body crumbles into the primal dust from which it came. You send to humanity diseases as beneficent messengers to foretell approaching danger and to urge him to avert it.
You have blest Your earth, your rivers and Your mountains with healing substances; they enable Your creatures to alleviate their sufferings and heal their illnesses. You have endowed us with the wisdom to relieve the suffering of his brother, to recognize his disorders, to extract the healing substances, to discover their powers and to prepare and to apply them to suit every ill.. In Your Eternal Providence You have chosen me to watch over the health and the life of Your creatures. I am now about to apply myself to the duties of my profession. Support me, Almighty God, in these great labours that they may benefit humankind, for without Your help not even the least thing will succeed.
Inspire me with love for my art and for Your creatures. Do not allow thirst for profit, ambition for renown and admiration, to interfere with my profession, for these are the enemies of truth and of love for humankind and they can lead astray in the great task of attending to the welfare of Your creatures. Preserve the strength of my body and of my soul that they ever be ready to cheerfully help and ·support rich and poor, good and bad, enemy as well as friend. In the sufferer let me see only the human being. Illumine my mind that it recognize what presents itself and that it may comprehend what is absent or hidden. Let it not fail to see what is visible, but do not permit it to arrogate to itself the power to see what cannot be seen, for delicate and indefinite are the bounds of the great art of caring for the lives and health of Your creatures. Let me never be absent minded. May no strange thoughts divert my attention at the bedside of the sick, or disturb my mind in its silent labours, for great and sacred are the thoughtful deliberations required to preserve the lives and health of Your creatures.
Grant that my patients have confidence in me and my art and follow my direction and my counsel. Remove from their midst all charlatans and the whole host of officious relatives and know-all nurses, cruel people who arrogantly frustrate the wisest purposes of our art and often lead Your creatures to their death.
Should those who are wiser than I wish to improve and instruct me, let my soul gratefully follow their guidance; for vast is the extent of our art. Should conceited fools, however, censure me, then let love for my profession steel me against them, so that I remain steadfast without regard for age, for reputation, or for honour,- because surrender would bring to Your creatures sickness and death.
Imbue my soul with gentleness and calmness when older colleagues, proud of their age, wish to displace me or to scorn me or disdainfully to teach me. May even this be of advantage to me, for they know many things of which I am ignorant, but let not their arrogance give me pain. For they are old, and old age is not master of the passions. I also hope to attain old age upon this earth, before You, Almighty God!
Let me be contented in everything except in the great science of my profession. Never allow the thought to arise in me that I have attained to sufficient knowledge, but vouchsafe to me the strength, the leisure and the ambition ever to extend my knowledge. For art is great, but the mind of humanity is ever expanding.
(A DAY OF DISTRESS
A day of distress and anguish,
and I think of your message.
and justice shapes your mouth and heart.
5 I remember your words which calmed me
when trouble came near,
and hope for your view and deliverance.
In all of your goodness you'd sent your servant—
in bed, still a boy—
10 seraphs to greet me.
They sat alongside me, and Micha'el spoke:
Thus saith the Lord, who contends in your cause:
When you pass through the waters I will stay you,
and the rivers will not overwhelm you
15 when your enemies come.
And Gabriel, too, his companion
beside your chariot,
heard of my fate and reported:
When you wade through fire you will not be burned;
20 I will speak to the flame which will not harm you.
These are words I've held like a sword.
Though I stand before swords, I count on your blade. Shmuel haNagid
(HaNagid, Shmuel and Peter Cole. Selected Poems of Shmuel HaNagid. Princeton University Press, 2016.)
HIS BROTHER’S ILLNESS
And my uncle Isaac fell ill, God have mercy upon him,
in the year 4801 , and his heart went out to him and he said:
My limbs thicken with
and my vision
blurs with tears as it sharpens;
and grief is budding 5
along my mind,
like weeds after
rains that smother the furrows.
and sickens me now. 10
What good is sweetness
when one's brother lies ill?
Let me make account
and not, my Lord, him, for my weakness.
If I err — 15
would you punish another?
Then what of the error,
remaining within? (Shmuel haNagid, loc cit)
The Chief Rabbi’s Prayer (Rabbi Ephraim Mervis)
20th March 2020/24th Adar 5780
The Chief Rabbi has composed this special prayer which can be recited at home at a time of your choosing. In addition, Psalms 91, 121 and 130 (Green Siddur pages 582, 510 and 516) can be added.
We turn to You at this time of deep global concern, to bestow Your mercy upon all the inhabitants of our vulnerable world, which is now so seriously afflicted.
Almighty God, who sustains the living with lovingkindness, supports the fallen and heals the sick, grant consolation to the bereaved families and send a speedy and complete recovery to all who have contracted the virus, as the Prophet Jeremiah declared:
כִי אַּעֲלֶׁה אֲרֻכָה לָךְ וּמִמַּכוֹתַּיִךְ אֶׁרְפָאֵךְ, נְאֻם השם
“For I will restore health unto you, and I will heal you of your wounds, says the Lord”.
Bless with strength those who are suffering. Bless with resilience those in isolation. Bless with hope those who are despondent. Bless with wisdom all those who seek a cure and bless with compassion all those who offer comfort.
Bless the leaders of our nations. Give them and their advisors knowledge and foresight to act with wisdom and sincerity for the wellbeing of all whom they serve.
Bless the doctors, nurses, all healthcare professionals and key workers who tirelessly seek to heal and help those affected, while in so doing put themselves at risk.
Open our hearts in prayer and our hands in generosity to guarantee that the physical distance this virus creates between us will be bridged through compassion and kindness.
Almighty God of healing and hope, at this time of heightened global awareness of our mutual interdependence, enable all of humankind to appreciate the strength that comes from being united in concern and love, rather than divided with hate and prejudice. As we look to the future, may You endow all people with the capacity to build and sustain societies of unity, tolerance, harmony and peace.
O Lord, our Rock and Salvation, lead us speedily from despair to hope, from fear to trust and from the dread of death to the celebration of life.
וַּאֲנִי תְפִלָתִי-לְךָ השם, עֵת רָצוֹן
May this prayer of mine come before You at a propitious time.
וְכֵן יְהִי רָצוֹן
And may this be Your will,
(20) My child, listen to my speech; Incline your ear to my words. (21) Do not lose sight of them; Keep them in your mind. (22) They are life to him who finds them, Healing for his whole body.
May it be Your will, O our God,
that we be allowed to stand in places of astonishing light
and not in dark places,
and may our hearts know no pain,
and may our vision not be so clouded
that we would not see all the blessings of Life
that You have given us.
(Rabbi Alexandrai’s prayer (or the prayer of Rav Himnuna) Talmud Berachot 17a)
Rav Dimi said,
“Whoever visits one who is ill contributes significantly
to that person’s recovery. (Nedarim 40a)
One who feels pain in his head should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “For they shall be a graceful wreath for your head.” One who feels pain in his throat should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And chains about your neck.” One who feels pain in his intestines should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “It shall be health to your navel” (Proverbs 3:8). One who feels pain in his bones should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And marrow to your bones” (Proverbs 3:8). One who feels pain in his entire body should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And health to all their flesh” (Proverbs 4:22). (Eruvin 54a)
May the One who blessed our ancestors
Bless all those who put themselves at risk to care for the sick
Physicians and nurses and orderlies
Technicians and home health aides
EMTs and pharmacists
And bless especially / an individual or other categories of health workers/
Who navigate the unfolding dangers of the world each day,
To tend to those they have sworn to help.
Bless them in their coming home and bless them in their going out.
Ease their fear. Sustain them.
Source of all breath, healer of all beings,
Protect them and restore their hope.
Strengthen them, that they may bring strength;
Keep them in health, that they may bring healing.
Help them know again a time when they can breathe without fear.
Bless the sacred work of their hands.
May this plague pass from among us, speedily and in our days.
--- Rabbi Ayelet S. Cohen, March 2020
from AJC haggadah
Passover Prayer in the Age of Coronavirus
Why is this night different from all other nights? Why is this Passover different from all other Passovers?
On this Passover, when a pandemic threatens our collective health on an unimaginable scale, we are called to respond with the power of our humanity, with the Divine spirit implanted within us, with our legacy of hope and determination to prevail.
We pray for the at risk, the isolated, the stricken, the mourners.
We pray for those who have dedicated their lives to keeping us healthy—doctors, nurses, health-care workers—and all who sustain our hospitals and health-care institutions— existing and makeshift—operating under trying circumstances.
We pray for the first responders—police officers, fire fighters, military personnel who have been marshalled to the cause—all who are responsible for the safety of our communities.
We pray for our elected officials, who can save lives with wise leadership.
May God bless all of our public servants and watch over them.
On this Passover, when so many are separated from one another at a traditional time of being together, we reach out to one another with renewed love and compassion. When someone is missing from our Seder table, we tell their story as if they are with us. When there is personal sadness, we respond with communal solidarity, empathy, and fortitude.
On this Passover, not “all who are hungry can come and eat” and not “all who are in need can come and celebrate Passover.” In response, we commit all the days of our year to a heightened awareness of Passover’s values—to freeing the enslaved, to feeding the hungry, to sheltering the homeless, to supporting the poor. We rededicate ourselves to rekindling and cherishing our Passover traditions for all the years of our future, when light will overcome darkness, when health will overcome infirmity.
Dear God, “Spread over us Your canopy of peace . . . Shelter us in the shadow of Your wings . . .Guard us and deliver us. . . Guard our coming and our going, grant us life and peace, now and always.”
“This year we are slaves, next year we will be free.”
Haggadah Supplement 2020
Passover 5780/2020 • Rabbi Noam E. Marans • AJC Director of Interreligious and Intergroup Relations
A Seder Responsive Reading in the Age of Coronavirus
As we fill our four cups of wine, we pray for a time when our cups will yet again
As we wash our hands, we affirm our role in protecting ourselves and others.
As we dip in salt water, we cry the tears of a planet besieged.
As we break the matzah, we long to be made whole.
As we ask the four questions, we search for the answers that elude us.
As we remember the ten plagues, we contemplate our own.
As we imagine our own redemption from Egypt, we aspire to be free.
As we sing Dayenu, we beseech, may our efforts to combat this pandemic be enough.
As we eat the matzah, we contemplate our impoverished state.
As we consume the bitter herbs, we empathize with another’s pain.
As we enjoy the haroset, we remember the sweetness which awaits us.
As we search for the afikomen, we pray to be connected to our missing pieces.
As we welcome Elijah, we pray for redemption.
As we sing songs of praise, we remain grateful for all of God’s gifts.
|by Rabbi Marci Bloch|
Hold me God...hold me now.
I am afraid.
My (husband/ wife/ sister /brother /child /mother /father /loved one) is alone, and my heart is breaking.
I want so bad to hold his/ her /their hand and comfort him /her /them—
but I can’t.
Help me to know that even though I am not physically there with him/ her/them....
I am very much there.
Give me hope, oh God.
Help me to put all my trust in his/her/ their doctors and his/ her/their medical staff to make the right decisions.
Fill my loved one’s lungs with air and restore him/her to life.
Protect him/ her/ them, watch over him/ her /them, heal him /her /them.
Give me strength, oh God in this hour of darkness to know you are there holding me.
PRAYER FOR THE CORONAVIRUS CRISIS
Eternal One, Rock of our lives, we turn to you in the midst of this coronavirus crisis, seeking refuge and a foothold – and also encouragement as we try to find our own courage.
As social distancing prevents us from experiencing the joys of life in community, may the need to withdraw and stay well be accompanied by the urge to reach out to others with compassion and care and to forge and renew connections, even in the absence of physical contact.
Recalling the trials of those who went before us and their endurance and survival, may we find the strength to endure even in the face of pain and loss, and the insight to know that this challenging time will pass.
As the natural world renews itself, may we be inspired by the wonders and marvels of the Earth to discover through this crisis pathways to renewal and new hope.
And let us say: Amen.
Rabbi Elli Tikvah Sarah
Brighton and Hove Progressive Synagogue
March 2020 – Adar 5780
Eternal Our God, Source of our life and our Sovereign, be a shield about us, turning away every disease and destruction. Grant us hope and a future of shalom, peace. Be merciful over us and grant recovery to everyone, because You are the most kind and compassionate Sovereign of all.
Blessed are You, who listens to the prayers.
שְמַע יִשְרָאֵל יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ יְהוָה אֶחָֽד
אָנָּא יְהוָה, הוֹשִׁיעָה נָּא;
אָנָּא יְהוָה, הַצְלִיחָה נָּא.
God, we beseech You, save us now!
God, we beseech You, let us prosper!
(Rabbi Andrea Zanardo, Brighton and Hove Reform Synagogue, March 2020)
35 This evening, we join with the rest of the world in praying for a quick and positive end to the crisis in which we find ourselves. We pray for those who are sick and dying, and for those tending to their care.
We pray for their families, and for those who are most anxious about getting sick.
We pray for leaders faced with making difficult choices with lasting consequences.
We pray for students whose hopes for celebrating their accomplishments have been thwarted.
We pray for all those in the work-force who have been – and who will be – directly impacted by the need for social-distancing.
Tonight, I offer a prayer that comes to us from our liturgy, which we call “Hashkiveinu.” It is a nighttime prayer that asks God for protection and blessing. It seems fitting to offer these words tonight:
הַשְׁכִּיבֵֽנוּ, יְיָ אֱלֹהֵֽנוּ, לְשָׁלוֹם, וְהַעֲמִידֵנוּ שׁוֹמְרֵֽנוּ לְחַיִּים
Grant, O God, that we lie down in peace, and raise us up, our Guardian, to life renewed. Spread over us the shelter of Your peace. Guide us with Your good counsel; for Your Name’s sake, be our help. Shield and shelter us beneath the shadow of Your wings. Defend us against enemies, illness, war, famine and sorrow. Distance us from wrongdoing. For You, God, watch over us and deliver us. For You, God, are gracious and merciful. Guard our going and coming, to life and to peace evermore.”
36 Out of the depths I call to you, God hear my prayer. I face the unknown and the unknowable and I cannot do this alone. It is said that You formed human beings in wisdom, creating our bodies complex and sensitive for us to live through in fullness, and yet so sensitive and complex that it may become impossible for us to remain alive should some small change occur in them. And so I wait for You, my soul waits and hopes for You to answer. My soul waits for You more than ever before because I cannot do this alone. I desire life, I love the days I live, I want to have more of them. To feel again the sunshine on my skin, to see again the happiness of the faces of those I love, to look forward again with pleasure. And now I sit in the depths, in the cool dark of the now, and my soul waits for the morning and for You. You are said to be the healer of all flesh, so I ask You now for healing.
And should Your answer come to tell me the future will not be mine, then be with me, redeem my soul and let me take refuge in You, for none who take refuge with you shall remain in the depths. (Sylvia Rothschild: Prayer in illness and distress)
| Prayer for Cessation of the Disease Now Raging, by Rabbi Dr. Moses Gaster (1892)
|Source (Hebrew)||Translation (English)|
אֵל מֶלֶךְ רַחוּם וְחַנּוּן,
אֲשֶׁר בְּיָדְךָ נֶפֶשׁ כׇּל חָי
וְרוּחַ כׇּל בְּשַׂר אִישׁ,
מוֹרִיד שְׁאוֹל וּמַעֲלֶה,
הַבִּיטָה מִמְּעוֹן קָדְשְׁךָ וּרְאֵה
כִּי עָלָה מָוֶת בְּחַלּוֹנֵינוּ
לְהַכְרִית עוֹלָל מִחוּץ
וּבַחוּרִים מֵרְחֹבוֹת, (ירמיה ט:כ)
מִבְּכוֹר הַמֶּלֶךְ הַיּוֹשֵׁב עַל כִּסְאוֹ
עַד בְּכוֹר הַשְּׁבִי אֲשֶׁר בְּבֵית הַבּוֹר, (שמות יב:כט)
כׇּל רֹאשׁ לָחֳלִי
וְכׇל לֵבָב דַּוָּי׃
Merciful and Gracious God,
in whose hands is the soul of every living thing,
and the spirit of all flesh;
who killest and makest alive,
who bringest down to the grave and bringest up.
Look down from Thy holy abode and see:
death is come up into our windows,
it is entered into our palaces,
to cut off the children from without
and the young men from the streets.
From the firstborn of the king who sitteth upon his throne
to the firstborn of the captive that is in the dungeon,
every head is sick,
every heart is faint.
שׁוּב מֵהֲרוֹן אַפֶּיךָ
וֶאֱמוֹר לְמַלְאָךְ הַמַּשְׁחִית
רַב עַתָּה הֶרֶף יָדֶיךָ׃ (שמואל ב׳ כד:טז חלק)
turn from Thy fierce wrath,
and say unto the angel that destroys:
It is enough, now stay thine hand.
רְפָאֵנוּ ה׳ וְנֵרָפֵא
הַעֲלֵה רְפוּאָה לְתַחֲלוּאֵינוּ
חֲבוֹשׁ אֶת מַכְּתֵינוּ,
הָסֵר חֹלִי וּמַדְוֶה מִקִּרְבֵּנוּ,
מְחֵה דִמְעָה מֵעַל כׇּל פָּנִים
וְשַׁלֵּם נִחוּמִים לָנוּ וְלַאֲבֵלֵינוּ,
שְׁלַח לָנוּ מַרְפֵּא אֲרוּכָה מַרְפֵּא בְרָכָה מַרְפֵּא רַחֲמִים
וְשָׁלוֹם וְחַיִּים וְאוֹרֶךְ יָמִים,
וְכֵן יְהִי רָצוֹן
Heal us, O Lord, and we shall be healed:
save us and we shall be saved.
Vouchsafe healing to our pains,
bind up our wounds,
remove sickness and disease from our midst,
wipe away the tears from off all faces.
Restore comfort unto us and our mourners;
send us in mercy and grace, healing,
peace and length of life.
May this be Thy gracious will.