As Passover approaches, we prepare to recite the story of our exodus from Egypt—but in a different context this year. Most of us will not be sitting down at our Seder tables with loved ones. Perhaps more than ever, we can relate to the commandment to “know the feelings of the stranger, having [ourselves] been strangers in the land of Egypt.”

While the thought of hosting or attending a virtual Passover seder is far from ideal, they will be more vital than ever. Below are tips and ideas to consider to create meaning and connection as we practice social distancing. To learn more about ADL’s Passover Resources, click here.

Articles related to hosting a seder online

How to Host a Virtual Passover Seder
How to Make Your Virtual Seder Lively, Engaging and Meaningful
Global Passover Toolkit 

Embrace the spirit of Passover (Questions to Consider)

This is not the first time the Jewish people have celebrated Passover under difficult circumstances. So, what becomes possible when we have to get inventive?
What does freedom mean to us this year, as we quarantine?
How does hardship help us connect to the essence of the holiday?
Hosting can be a (joyful) burden! What’s one thing that will make this Passover meaningful?

The Technology

Google Hangouts, Skype, FaceTime and Zoom are all good options for connecting virtually. For our specific purposes, we’re recommending Zoom, as it has features (free account, scheduling, screen sharing, instant messaging chat) to make your seder easy to organize and wonderfully interactive. Zoom allows you to set a “virtual background” – try a background that includes desert scenery, the Red Sea or ancient Egypt. No matter what platform your family chooses, think about a practice call in advance so that your seder can be focused less on the tech, and more on the holiday.

No matter what platform your family chooses, think about a practice call in advance so that your seder can be focused less on the tech, and more on the holiday.

Organizing the seder

Choosing a Haggadah

This unprecedented moment presents the opportunity for creativity. If your family doesn’t have a go-to Haggadah, consider creating your own (with the help of a variety of templates) at or use ADL’s Nation of Immigrants Passover Seder Haggadah Supplement.

Opening the seder 

Consider opening the seder with a ritual that allows everyone to become present.

For example, ask everyone to place their hand on their heart and take a deep breath as a group. Or, ask everyone to think about one thing they’re bringing to “the table” this year.

Telling the Story 

Think about assigning parts for each person to read in advance. This will allow your virtual seder to flow a lot more smoothly.
You could also consider assigning each attendee a different theme (i.e. liberation, empathy, resilience, community) to explore and share through a poem, song, piece of art, etc. before or during the seder so that the seder feels more collaborative.
Seders involve music! But, because of the inherent sound delay, singing doesn’t sound so great on Zoom.
     – If your family is quite musical (or just fearless) break up the parts of a song and have different folks take the lead on a verse.
     – Conversely, one person can sing while others dance, or those not singing put themselves on ‘Mute’ and sing their hearts out.
     – Or, the seder host can play a studio-recorded version of one of the songs.

Consider a seating chart

If you don’t want to pre-assign reading to guests, make a seating chart that everyone can have on their screens during the seder so that sections can be read without the host having to constantly call on each person by name.

The Food

While we might have to de-center the food this year, we can still find ways to feel like we’re enjoying a meal together.
Pass around a recipe ahead of time so that everyone quite literally winds up eating the same dish.
If the food in each home is different, consider coordinating when you eat what (i.e. all eat your soup at the
same time).
Share the story of your family Passover recipes.

Modern Day Plagues

ADL’s Haggadah explores our world’s Modern Day Plagues.
Anti-Muslim Bigotry
Anti-LGBTQ+ Bigotry
Anti-Trans Bigotry
Anti-Immigrant Bigotry
Bigotry Against any Group or Individual
Silence: The Failure to Challenge Bigotry

As we collectively deal with the worldwide impact of COVID-19, it’s especially important for us to think of those risking their own well-being to help our society function in the most basic ways (healthcare providers, first responders, grocery store workers, truck drivers, sanitation workers, warehouse workers, restaurant workers, etc.).
Here you can find a prayer for workers in a time of pandemic, written by Rabbi Michael Rothbaum.

Passover is also a time to think of the many engaged in a journey to freedom.
Here you can find prayers and readings focused on refugees from HIAS

Also consider how your family might aid communities in need: raising funds, making phone calls, donating blood, sewing masks, donating to food pantries, helping neighbors, etc.

Visit for more resources on Passover and the Haggadah