What is Hanukkah?
Hanukkah is an eight-day religious holiday celebrated by people of the Jewish faith. Each year in mid-December, Jews all over the world celebrate the Festival of Lights which commemorates a Jewish victory over the Greeks 2000 years ago. In 165 BCE, when the Jews came to rededicate the Temple they had reclaimed, they found only one small flask of oil with which to light their Menorah, or lamp. This flask contained enough oil to last for just one day, yet the lamp burned for eight days, the same exact amount of time it takes to completely prepare the sacred oil for a new ceremony. This is considered the miracle of Hanukkah.
The Menorah During the festival of Hanukkah, menorahs are lit for eight days to commemorate each night the original lamp burned. There are nine candles on the menorah, one for each night and one in the center, which is used to light the others. Each evening, families gather at nightfall to rekindle menorah flames, rededicate themselves to their faith, and to share in the festive meals. Blessings are sung as the candles are lit. Continue Reading…