Victor L. Ludlow, a Brigham Young University professor of ancient scripture, will conduct five Passover Seder Services during the weeks surrounding Palm Sunday.
Passover services will be at the Wilkinson Center Skyroom at 6:30 p.m. on March 23, 27 and 30 and April 11 and 13. The service traditionally lasts 31/2 hours. Two hundred guests may participate each night.Tickets are $12 for BYU students, faculty, staff and alumni and $15 for the public. Tickets must be purchased in advance at 271 Joseph Smith Building or by phone at 378-3611.
Once a service is sold out, callers may be placed on a waiting list.
Ludlow initiated the Passover celebration tradition at BYU 20 years ago with his Old Testament classes. Interest in the celebration grew until Ludlow expanded the program to multiple nights and included the public. Tickets are in such high demand that a participant list is started one year in advance.
"I think the celebration is so popular because there is a yearning to know more about the Jewish heritage and to understand the culture," said Patty Smith of Religious Education. "The celebration is a spiritual experience, but it is also exciting and fun."
Guests will have the opportunity to partake of the symbolic food. They are offered lamb shankbone as a symbol of the Passover sacrifice to remember how the "Holy One" passed over the houses of Israelites in Egypt. The matzah is to remind how Israelites took unleavened dough as they hastily journeyed from Egypt. The bitter herbs are to remind of the bitterness of Israel's bondage to the Egyptians.
Other symbolic traditions that guests participate in include the toasting and drinking of grape juice, washing of the hands and the Hillel sandwich, a reminder of the temple days. A Passover meal is served and is concluded with the Afikomen (dessert).