Passover Seder Etiquette for Christians


My son (in law school) was invited to a Passover seder, and we’d like to know any rules of etiquette for the occasion. We’re Christians, and neither of us has ever been to one. He’s excited about going, but is nervous.

Any comments/recommendations would be most appreciated.




Bring flowers instead of wine or dessert. That way you don’t have to worry about making sure your gift is kosher for passover.

Bring your reading glasses, if you have them.

Don’t be shy about asking questions.

don’t overdo it with the horseraddish (you’ll see).

don’t ask for milk with your coffee.

Don’t expect dessert to be anything great.


Thanks Valke2.


As you might imagine, since the eucharist is patterned after a passover seder, there is ritual drinking of wine throughout the meal. You’re not required to empty the glass each time, but it is OK if you do. I think if you empty the glass each time, you’ll need a designated driver for the trip home. :wink: And don’t drink from the glass left on the table at the end of the meal, it’s for Elijah.

There are also many ritual foods (the horseradish is among them!) and he may find it very interesting to learn about the meaning of each one. He will really have a good time! It is fascinating to see a passover seder and see the similarities to the eucharist.


Thanks for the advice, MelanieAnne.

If there are any other Jews on these forum, we would greatly appreciate all comments and recommendations!:slight_smile:



Valke2 is Jewish.

Have a great time! Let us know how it goes!


There’s not much more you need to know. Try not to make the sign of the cross too often and enjoy your meal.

Since you are invited, I’m assuming at least part of the haggada will be read in English.

When you get to the part where the rabbis are discussing how many plauges befell the Egyptians, you will be reading a portion that is meant to show you, in a simplified way, how Talmud works.

You also may notice that the main human character of Exodus – Moses – is only mentioned once in the entire seder – perhaps to emphasize that it was God, not Moses, who redeemed our people. This may be the same reason as to why we don’t know were Moses was buried. So that people did not turn his grave into a place of worship.

Other things to discuss: Why did God harden Pharoah’s heart, and why does this not occur until the fifth plauge.

Now you can do a little homeword and wow your hosts at the meal :slight_smile:


if you want to preview what will happen, find a book in the children’s section of the library about Passover, and the traditions of Passover (that is how I learned a lot of what I know about Jewish belief and practice). If your grocery store has a well stocked section of Passover foods and resources, there will probably be inexpensive paperback booklets (like a missalette) with the order of prayers and blessings, usually in Hebrew on one side and English on the other.

read the Exodus account to refresh your memory of the biblical events before you go (we should do this during Holy Week in any case).


I knew Valke2 is Jewish. If I offended somehow, I apologize. My only intent was to get comments from as many folks as possible.


Oh, no! No offense at all! I am so sorry if I came across that way! Based on your post I did not know if you realized Valke2 was Jewish and not just some random Catholic… like me! :o I’m sorry Larry!


I’d hate to offend a Jew with my Christianity…oh so sorry!


no matzah for you.


Is it okay to make the sign of the cross if we stop at the forehead?:smiley:


And instead of saying “In the name of the Father …” you’ll say, “Oy, vey!” :stuck_out_tongue:


How should he dress?

BTW, he told me today that several of his law school friends were invited, so that might reduce the nervousness a bit.


My sister-in-law goes to a catholic church that has a seder dinner. I don’t quite understand that. Is this frequently done?


I’ve never heard of a seder in a Catholic church.

If you’re thinking that’s what’s happening in my son’s case, no, it’s either a Jewish professor or student that invited him and other law school students to their home. I thought it was great! Wish I could go!


My brother was engaged to a christian girl at the time of my wedding. We have some very nice wedding video or her making the sign of the cross. It was very distrubing.

Also, when you are at the seder, remember the wine IS ONLY WINE! :slight_smile:


Also, based on my dealings with christians here, at some point you may feel an overwhelming urge to explain Isaiah 53. Fight the urge :slight_smile:

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