Cryptic jewish kids on parade...
May 23, 2008 8:12 PM   Subscribe

I ran into a parade of children from our local Hebrew school today...what were they chanting?

While out and about on errands today, I ran into a strange parade. At first I thought the Amish had made a break for it, given the long beards, sideburns, and bowler hats on the adult men in the parade, but it quickly became apparent that it was the kids from a local Hebrew school (plus teachers), carrying signs that read things like "Proud to be a Jew!" and chanting.

A bit of googling indicates that this was probably apropos of the holiday Lag BaOmer, which is apparently celebrated with children's activities and even parades. So, that mystery is solved. But, what I can't figure out is what the kids were chanting. They were saying "We don't want to wait for *some word that starts with M that I can't remember*! We want *that aforementioned word* now!" Whatever the word was, it was something that I had not heard before, about three or four syllables, and I think it began with "M." Help me askmefi! What didn't the Hebrew school kids want to wait for?!?!
posted by Wavelet to Religion & Philosophy (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Moschiach. MO-SKE or SCHKE- OCK or OCH.

(The messiah.)
posted by brina at 8:13 PM on May 23, 2008

Oops. More commonly spelled Moshiach. Like this.
posted by brina at 8:22 PM on May 23, 2008

Why would they be saying they want the messiah to come faster? And chanting it in a parade? I'm Jewish and I've never heard of that. Granted, I'm non-practicing and didn't grow up in New York, but it still seems strange.
posted by bingo at 8:24 PM on May 23, 2008

There were almost certainly Lubavitch hasids.
posted by buriedpaul at 8:28 PM on May 23, 2008

Upon Moshiach (Literally, 'messiah'), Jews believe that all will be resurrected and live in unity in Israel. Somehow they'll al fit in ut at once.
posted by LSK at 8:48 PM on May 23, 2008

Most Lubavitch Hasids believed that Rebbe Schneerson would become the Messiah. His death in 1994 threw a bit of a wrench into the works. Some still believe that he is the Messiah (or the catalyst for the Messiah's coming) and will be resurrected (or emerge from hiding because he never really died) soon.
posted by weebil at 9:41 PM on May 23, 2008

My knowledge of Hasidic (or, more particularly, Lubavitch) Jews is minimal, so someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

Certain actions, such as observing the Sabbath and other Jewish commandments, are thought to hasten the Messiah's arrival. Therefore, saying that they "Want Moshiach now" encourages the children to follow and promote what they think of as ideal Jewish behavior.
posted by walla at 10:12 PM on May 23, 2008 [1 favorite]

Theoretically all Jews are eager and waiting for the messiah to come, but currently some Jewish groups make a bigger deal of it than others.
posted by Salamandrous at 10:20 PM on May 23, 2008

The Hebrew school kids probably spelled it משיח though.
posted by rossmik at 8:30 AM on May 24, 2008 [1 favorite]

Thanks, everyone! This is all very enlightening.
posted by Wavelet at 10:41 AM on May 24, 2008

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