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Mishloach Manot

Thursday, 19 March, 2009 - 1:13 pm

Dear Parents:

Did you notice the royal palace as you came to school this morning? Walk inside and feel like a king or queen! The royal palace of Persia is the setting of the Purim Story, a story that took place 2,300 years ago...


Megillat Esther, The Book of Esther (where this ancient story is transcribed) opens in the royal courts of the Persian Empire and the King Achashverosh (Xerxes). The Jewish people, having being exiled from the land of Israel to Persia (by way of Babylonia), were part of this empire. A beautiful Jewish woman by the name Esther was forced to join the king’s harem. As luck would have it – or Divine providence – she made a deep impression on the king, he fell in love with her and he asked her to marry him. Esther’s uncle, Rabbi Mordechai, told her not to reveal her Jewish identity to the king.

Enter the villain of the story, wicked Haman, the arrogant advisor to the king. Haman wanted to destroy the Jewish people and got the king’s permission to annihilate all the Jews. Rabbi Mordecai advised his niece Esther to speak to the king on behalf of the Jewish people. This was a dangerous thing for Esther to do, because anyone who came into the king's presence without being summoned could be put to death, and she had not been summoned. Esther fasted for three days to prepare herself, then went into the king. He welcomed her. She told him of Haman's plot against her people. The Jewish people were saved, and Haman was hanged on the gallows that had been prepared for Mordecai*.

*This is not the way we tell the story to the children. Class newsletters will describe it further.


The Book of Esther is the only book of the Bible that does not contain the name nor any reference to G-d. It seems as if our victory was due to wonderful coincidences and ordinary good luck. But G-d often works in ways that are not apparent, in ways that appear to be chance. It is up to us to uncover that hidden-ness of the Divine/human relationship and acknowledge its place in our lives.

Taking this message to human relationships – friendships, even strangers – we share a world together and it is wonderful to take the time to acknowledge the connections we have with each other!


To commemorate the miracle and the message, Rabbi Mordechai established the Purim holiday. He asked that everyone should involve themselves in uncovering the hidden beauties all around them. We have a festive meal in celebration. We hear the story of Purim to gain context for this message. We give money to charity: Helping those who have less than us is our moral responsibility. And we give MISHLOACH MANOT, gifts of foods to our friends to celebrate our relationships.


Purim reminds us that there is always a special relationship to celebrate! All we need to do is stop, think about it and tap into it. And that what Purim asks of us to d o. To stop and think about the people dear to us and show our appreciation. We give each other gifts of food to express our gratitude for the relationship.

Here at Zimmer Preschool we are a family. We share common goals and aspirations for our children and know the value in creating relationships.

This Purim come and be part of this beautiful Mishloach Manot Project!

Mishloach Manot is a food gift that we give to a friend to acknowledge our relationship.

This is a wonderful opportunity to foster our connections we have within the Zimmer School community.

We, at Zimmer, will facilitate the giving/getting of Mishloach Manot Food Gifts between our families.

Here’s how we will do it:

  • By Wednesday, February 25, we ask that each family write a short description about themselves to share with the family that they’re (randomly) matched with. This way we can get to know each other better.
  • On Friday, February 27, each family will be matched to another family to give a Mishloach Manot Food Gift.
  • You can assemble the Mishloach Manot Food Gift in our Mishloach Manot Gift room (upstairs at Zimmer) where there will be a large assortment of Purim treats and decorative packaging.
  • In addition to the food package, how about writing a note to ‘your’ family? You can take it home to do that or you can do it there. Paper and pens will be provided.
  • Over the next days – or at the Chabad Purim Party, Tuesday, March 10 at 5pm – please give ‘your’ family their gift.

So, to get this process going, please send in a write-up about your family. You can include the names and ages of your children, where you live, hobbies and interests of your family or anything else you would like to share.  

Please send your family's description by Wednesday, February 25.

If you have any questions, please speak with Morah Batsheva, who is coordinating this project, or to Morah Linda.

With wishes for rich and meaningful relationships!

Dear Parents,

Thanks for the feedback from yesterday's e-mail.
Just to recap: Our objective is to strengthen the ties within the Zimmer community. In the spirit of the upcoming Purim holiday, we thought it would be nice to have a Mishloach Manot Gift Food exchange (all the goods provided by Zimmer). To facilitate this, we ask that each family share a short blurb about themselves by
Wednesday, February 25. Then, we will randomly pair families together - each making the Food Package for each other.

Some of you have asked for a sample of what a family description might look like. Here goes: “Hi, we are the John Doe family, made up of Mom, Dad, Jane, John, and our pet dog, Fido. Our grandparents live locally so we get to spend lots of time together. We love doing activities together, though sometimes life gets to busy to do it often enough. Mom loves to knit and play the piano, Dad loves skiing and would rather be outdoors any day, Jane has been excelling in ballet, and John is part of the band at school. Recently, he just got to participate in a big parade in Anytown, NJ.  We have been part of the Zimmer (or Chabad) family for… and we are curious to see who we are "matched up with." We look forward to strengthening a relationship and getting to know more about you! Happy Purim.

Comments on: Mishloach Manot

Jeanette wrote...

Thanks for the great info dog I owe you bggiity.