Church of England sorry for prayer booklet resembling Passover Haggadah
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Church of England sorry for prayer booklet resembling Passover Haggadah

Richard Sudworth, the Church’s national interreligious affairs adviser, apologised for any offence caused

Passover Seder plate and Haggadah on traditionally set table with several side dishes
Passover Seder plate and Haggadah on traditionally set table with several side dishes

The Church of England apologised for a booklet that it published featuring prayers for the Thursday before Easter and recommendations to perform customs observed by Jews on Passover.

The booklet of prayers ahead of Maudy Thursday is “not intended to be a Christianised seder,” Richard Sudworth, the Church’s national interreligious affairs adviser, said in a statement, according to a report Thursday by the JC. “We do not wish to encourage an impression that was not intended by the resource and apologise for any offence caused.”

The Church pulled the booklet offline and trashed a video it had intended to release ahead of Maudy Thursday, the report said.

A document published online by St. Mary’s Islington, a congregation that is one of the CofE’s oldest affiliates, states: “We recall this supper together, in a homely setting, and its origins in the Jewish Passover.”

It instructs readers to say the Shema Jewish prayer in Hebrew and to have a dinner in which one reader asks, “Why is this night different from all other nights?” and another replies, “Once we were slaves in the land of Egypt, but the Lord rescued us on this holy night. That is why this night is special, and different from all other nights.”

In another dialogue, one reader asks, “Why on this night do we eat only unleavened bread?” and another replies, “We eat unleavened bread because there was no time that night to let it rise.”

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