The Fourth Cup: Women Unnamed

Found In: Parts of the Seder

Tags: kadesh

By Elaine Tenenbaum | Ritual Component

Reader:

 

Tonight, with the fourth cup of wine, we honor Jewish women throughout our history who have been left nameless by historians, overlooked by scholars, ignored or forgotten.

We pay tribute to the women who came before us, including the Israelite women who suffered the hardships and indignities of slavery, who trudged through the desert for endless years, and who began new lives with new hope in the Promised Land.

All:

 

We remember them along with all women whose names have been forgotten - like Noah's wife and her sons' wives; like Lot's wife and their daughters; like Samson's mother; like Job's wife; like the daughter of Pharaoh. The list goes on

Reader:

 

Tonight, we remember all those whose names we'll never know - the Malkales, the Rivkas, the Shandels, the Golda's, and the Rosas. For tonight, let them be known as the mothers of our people, our matriarchs. Let their names be united with the One who transcends all.

All:

 

For the sake of the unnamed, we were delivered from Egypt. And, we were all there.

Reader:

 

We raise the fourth cup and all sing:

Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha'olam borei p'ri hagafen.

Blessed are You, O Lord, our God, King of the Universe, who creates the fruit of the vine.

Or

B'raucha At Ya Eloheinu Ruach ha-Olam boreit p'ri hagafen.

Let us bless the Source of Life that creates the fruit of the vine.

From the 1994 Columbus Ohio First Women's Seder. Used with permission.