Passover is just around the corner, and for me that means getting all the little kids at the Seder table excited and engaged. It doesn’t always work, though.
This year’s holiday might be saved, however, as I recently stumbled upon Teaneck author Martin Bodek. He has written several books which are modern and fun takes on the Haggadah, the book of stories and prayers read at the Passover table.
His latest Haggadah book, meant to produce a little bit more life and laughter at the Passover table, uses emojis to make the Haggadah more fun for the younger generation.
It’s not the first Haggadah he’s written. Others are based on "Seinfeld" humor ("The Festivus Haggadah"), and a Shakespearean take on the Passover story (“The Shakespeare Haggadah”). The books are appropriate for kids and educational and Bodek believes they will encourage children to be more engaged at the table, resulting in a greater understanding and takeaway from the holiday.
Bodek doesn’t just write relating to Passover. In fact, he has written plenty of other literature in hopes of honoring his lineage and religion. His seventh book entitled “Zaidy’s War” depicts life for his grandfather who was a part of four national armies during World War II. He aims to honor his grandfather and shed light on those who may not have had a voice throughout the Holocaust.
Coming from an Orthodox family, Jewish holidays were always the most important days of the year. Bodek recounts receiving his from Haggadah as a bar mitzvah gift in addition to his grandfather singing at each and every Seder.
His interpretations of the Haggadah are his way of making his family Seders just as memorable as the ones he experienced as a young boy. His books are a great way to continue the tradition of Passover while ensuring that the prayers and readings are impacting each and every member of the table.
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco only.
You can now listen to Dennis & Judi — On Demand! Hear New Jersey’s favorite best friends anytime, anywhere and any day of the week. Download the Dennis & Judi show wherever you get podcasts, on our free app, or listen right now: