Don’t Passover these handy Android apps

by Marty Gabel

Let me level with you. The available apps for Android concerning the Jewish festival of Passover pale in comparison to those on iOS. Let’s hope that changes in the future. In the meantime, there are still a few useful apps out there that can teach you what you need to know about Pesach, the Seder and other Jewish customs.

Ma Nishtana (Free)

Why is this app different from all other apps? Because it’s a helpful way for the youngest in the household to learn how to read and recite the Ma Nishtana (Four Questions). The text of the Ma Nishtana is in the Ashkenazy tradition, but the voice is deliberately robotic and somewhat grating. But, it’s all split up into convenient sections and is definitely helpful for learners. Reading Hebrew aloud at the Seder can be a nerve-wracking experience of many youngsters, so any assistance is of value!

The Union Haggadah ($0.99)

For a mere 99-cents, this is not a bad a purchase. The Haggadah, for those who don’t know, is the book that’s read on Seder night. It tells the entire story of Passover in text, verse and song, describing the exodus of the Jewish people from bondage in Pharaoh’s Egypt. This Union Haggadah edition was originally published in the early 20th century. It includes practical notes about staging the Seder, and an appendix which describes the historical context of the Passover celebrations.

Haggadah of Pesach ($9.99)

Quite a bit pricier than the app above, the Haggadah of Pesach app is also a little more feature-packed. As well as the full Hebrew and English text, divided into convenient and easy-to-read parts, it also outlines how to set up the Seder table, the preparations required, and lots about the history and origins of Passover. Get the matzah and maror ready and use this helpful app to ready yourself for the biggest night of the year.

Sefirat Haomer Widget (Free)

The 49 days between the Jewish holidays of Passover and Shavuot (the anniversary of when God gave the Israelites the Torah on Mt. Sinai) is often verbally counted by Jewish people. The tradition of counting each day (the Omer) represents the spiritual preparation and anticipation for Shavout, and now you can do it virtually via a handy widget on your Android smartphone’s home screen! Technology meets tradition for that perfect match.

OU Kosher (Free)

Jewish Kashrut laws can be quite complicated, so any app that helps is certainly worth a look. As far as Passover goes, the OU Kosher app makes it easy to discover what food is certified as “Kosher for Passover” which will be useful if the labels don’t clearly offer that information. OU Kosher is also handy the rest of the year, too. It provides product alerts, showcases newly-certified products and even offers access to the OU Kosher question and general information hotline.

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