A prayer for the return of hostages and captives

A prayer for the return of hostages and captives, to be recited at the Pesach Seder, prior to Vehi Sheam’da, composed by Chief Rabbi David Lau, Chief Rabbi of Israel

The original prayer in Hebrew can be read here.

A loose translation

May it be favourable before our Father in heaven

Who brought out His people Israel from the crushing burdens of Pharaoh’s Egypt,

That He bless and protect all our brothers and sisters who are hostages and in captivity

Incarcerated in iron chains.

May he strengthen their souls and faith,

Guard them from all distress and injury.

May He have compassion on his children who eagerly yearn for His deliverance.

May He annul every cruel decree issued against them.

In his great mercy, may He redeem them rapidly, so they go out with haste from darkness to light

From the pit of the dungeon to perpetual freedom.

And may He return them in peace to their families and homes.

Please, plant fraternity, peace and kinship in the hearts of them all.

Remove envy and causeless hatred and spread out the canopy of Your peace.

And may we merit very soon to utter before you a new song [of joy and praise]

Translation by Rabbi Michael Laitner, Director of Education, United Synagogue

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