Congregation Ohav Shalom, Albany NY     (518) 489-4706


April 10-18, 2017

Chametz Sale

While the ideal is to consume or destroy your chametz, tradition provides us with a process called mekhirat chametz – the selling of chametz.

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According to one official Haggadah registry, over 3,500 editions of the Haggadah exist in the world. Each has its own unique features, such as modified text, commentary, artwork, or translation. Often specific ideological predilections or agendas are woven into the text.

Our advice to you is to try to find the Haggadah version(s) which

  1. make the seder most meaningful to you, your family, and your guests,
  2. retain as much of the traditional text as possible, while utilizing modern translations and commentaries.

Below are three suggested versions:


April 9, 2017
8:00 PM
Search for Chametz – Bedikat Chametz
April 10, 2017
6:45 AM
Morning Service, Siyyum and Fast of the Firstborn.
WHAT IS A SIYYUM? There is a tradition that firstborn males fast on the day of Passover eve in gratitude for having been spared during the plague of the firstborn while our ancestors were in Egypt. Some rabbinic authorities require that first born females fast as well. The fast begins at sunrise. The widespread custom is to formally complete the study of a portion of Torah as a way of annulling the fast, since completion of formal Torah study is normally followed by a formal meal. On Monday morning, April 10th, we will hold a siyyum bekhorot, or completion of Torah study in honor of the firstborn. Rabbi Ornstein will complete the study of a portion of traditional Jewish literature. We will begin with morning services at 6:45 a.m., followed by brief Torah study, and a chametz feast prior to beginning the holiday. If you are a firstborn, or if you would like to come with your firstborn son or daughter, we look forward to seeing you at the service that morning.
10:00 AM
Chametz Sale forms deadline. Please make sure to get your forms in on time.
7:14 PM
First Seder Night Candle Lighting
April 11, 2017
9:15 AM
Pesach Morning Services
8:23 PM
Second Seder Candle Lighting from a preexisting flame
Counting of the Omer – Sefirat Ha Omer – begins. At the second Seder, we begin to count the omer, commemorating the counting of a measure of the wheat harvest in the days of the Temple. We continue to count seven weeks, bringing us from Passover to the holiday of Shavuot.


April 12, 2017
9:15 AM
Pesach Morning Services
8:24 PM
End of Yom Tov
April 13-16, 2017

The Intermediate Days of Passover – days that lie between the first and last days of Pesach – are semiholidays or Chol Ha-Moed. On the Shabbat that falls during the intermediate days, many congregations recite the Song of Songs, Shir ha-Shirim. This lyrical book is seen as a metaphor for the love between God and the people of Israel as well as a celebration of spring and nature.

6:45 AM
Weekday morning services for Chol HaMoed, (intermediate days of Pesach).
April 17, 2017
9:15 AM
Morning Services
No Yom Tov afternoon or evening services


8:30 PM
Candle Lighting from a pre-existing flame
THE 7th and 8th days of Passover are full festival days which have the same sanctity and regulations as the first days. The seventh day, according to tradition, marks the crossing of the Red Sea by the Israelites.


April 18, 2017

The 7th and 8th days of Passover are full festival days which have the same sanctity and regulations as the first days. Yizkor, the memorial prayer for loved ones who have died, is recited on the 8th day. This year, Yizkor will be recited on Tuesday, April 18th at approximately 10:30 AM.

9:15 AM
Morning Services
10:30 AM
Yizkor Service (time is approximate)
No Yom Tov afternoon or evening services.

8:31 PM
End of Pesach
Please remember to wait at least one hour after the holiday ends before eating chametz products in your home so that Rabbi Ornstein can buy back all chametz sold on behalf of the community before Passover.


Office Information

The office will close at 2 PM on Erev Pesach and will be closed for Yom Tov. The office is open on Hol HaMoed. The dates for Passover 5777 are as follows:

April 10
Office closes at 2:00 PM
April 11
Office closed
April 12
Office closed
April 13
Office open during normal weekday business hours
April 14
Office open during normal Friday business hours
April 17
Office closed
April 18
Office closed
In emergencies only, please contact Rabbi Ornstein, Rabbi Kieval or Phil Merens our Executive Director at home.


For the duration of Passover, please refrain from bringing food to the synagogue unless it is a closed, prepackaged, Kosher for Passover product.

Each year, Congregation Ohav Shalom publishes a Passover Guide, in which Rabbi Ornstein adapts and expands on Michael Strassfeld’s “The Jewish Holidays: A Guide and Commentary,” Harper & Row, 1985.

Our Passover 5777/2017 Guide is available for download here.

Passover Food Guidelines

A word to the consumer: some manufacturers and stores exploit Passover by selling items that either require no supervision or are available from national brands at normal prices. For example, some national brands of apple juice are available with a “Kosher for...

Kashering the Home for Pesach

“What is all this work of yours?’ asks the Haggadah. Getting ready for Pesach involves a lot of work, but it’s a labor of love. The following material on how to kasher your kitchen for Passover is based on interpretations of Jewish law made by the Rabbinical Assembly,...

The Seder

The structure of this reliving and retelling is the Seder. The Hebrew word Seder means “order,” and the meal ritual has a very carefully constructed order to it. The Seder includes many rituals, such as eating matzah and maror (the bitter herbs) ,drinking four cups of...

Jewish History: Living in the Past and Present

Passover marks the beginning of the relationship between God and the Jews as a people. Because it is the crucial event that marks the beginning of our sacred history, the Exodus is referred to repeatedly in Jewish liturgy and thought. At Passover, we are commanded to...

Passover: Names and Themes

The name Passover is taken from the Exodus story: During the tenth and ultimate plague inflicted on Pharaoh to break his will, God passed over the Israelites and struck down only the Egyptian firstborn. That night Pharaoh finally agreed to let the Israelites go; and...

Daily Minyanim

Mondays at 6:45 AM
Tuesdays at 7:00 AM
Wednesdays at 7:00 AM
Thursdays at 6:45 AM
Fridays at 7:00 AM
Sundays at 8:30 AM
*Federal Holidays at 8:00 AM

Shabbat Zmanim

Ohav Inclusion Info