The Sukkah Mystery Guest Experience for Families

One year while studying another of the themes of sukkot - fragility of life and concern for her ecosystems - I gave permission to the children to invite one mystery guest to dine in the sukkah each night.

First they drew numbered slips from a bowl to determine whose turn would be first.

They would decorate a chair in the sukkah as a seat of honor for the guest. Part of learning and practicing the mitzvah of "hachnassat orchim" - welcoming of guests.

The MOST AMAZING mystery guest for me was the night I arrived home to see the chair had been decorated with crunched up soda cans, foil, newspapers and bottles. Who was the guest? Actually there were two, the man and woman who work on the recycling truck that picks up our trash.

In this case one happened to be Hispanic, another Black. Neither had ever participated in a Jewish ritual or been in a Jewish home.