Congregation Ohave Shalom - Young Israel of Pawtucket

Haggadah: Ha Lachma Anya
This is Our Matzah

by: Rachelle Noorparvar

In some Haggadahs, it says "KiHa Lachma Anya" instead of "Ha Lachma Anya." What is the difference? The Maggid of Dubno answers with a story, as follows:

There was once a poor man. He would travel with a staff and with his backpack, selling goods. Once he came to a city, and he had a lot of success there. He began saving his money, and soon he bought a business and became very prosperous. He bought a big home, and settled down with his family. Every year, at the anniversary of his coming to the town in which he had become prosperous, he would put on his backpack, and take his staff, and then he and his family would have a big feast and he would shower them with gifts which he pulled from his bag.

One year his business deals fell through, and he was forced to sell his business and most of their beautiful things. He was very upset, but his wife said, "HaShem gave you a present, and now he has taken it away. Be happy for the time we had it."

So the man put on his backpack, and took up his staff, and walked into the living room to tell his children the bad news. The children became happy, and started dancing around, when they saw their father; they were used to him showering them with gifts when he was dressed that way. But the father's eyes were filled with tears, and he said, "Usually we have a party and everything when I wear these clothes, but today I wear them to earn a living."

So, long ago, when we had the Beis haMikdash, we were happy. We said, "This is like the Matzah that we ate in Egypt." This is "KiHa Lachma Anya." But now, when we are in exile, we say, "Ha Lachma Anya." "This is the Matzah that we ate many years ago, in Egypt."

  • Main Haggadah Page
  • Archive of Ohave Shalom Classes
  • Back to the Main Page