Hanukkah Celebrations Begin Tonight, Public Ceremonies To Be Held All Over Town

Hanukkah Celebrations Begin Tonight, Public Ceremonies To Be Held All Over Town

The candles and the light of the menorah symbolize the good that we do, Katzman said, and the Hanukkah celebration utilizing the menorah celebrates that light, or good, over the darkness, or evil. Since the eight day period is determined by the Hebrew calendar, it doesn't land on the exact same day each year.

Public menorah lightings for the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah took place around the world in locations ranging from ski towns and Caribbean islands to famous landmarks and sports arenas on Tuesday night, signaling the start of the 8-day long holiday. The holiday will start the evening of today, December 12, and end the evening of December 20.

"Hanukkah is a time for Jewish families around the world to come together around the lighting of the menorah and celebrate the miracles of the past and promises of the future".

As the celebration began, the courthouse filled with song and dance.

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Once the Jews defeated the Hellenist Syrian forces of Antiochus IV at the end of a three-year rebellion, the temple in Jerusalem, which the occupiers had dedicated to the worship of Zeus, was rededicated by Judah Maccabee, who led the insurgency begun by his father, the high priest Mattathias.

How do you celebrate it? .

Gary David Cohn, Director of the National Economic Council and the chief economic advisor to the president, did the honors of lighting the menorah. Every night, a candle or shamash (attendant) is lit with everyone gathered around the menorah, while reciting the blessings found in the prayerbook. As the story goes, the miracle was that the holy lamp oil, which was to last only one day of a four-day journey, lasted for eight.

The Menorah: The one used today has nine branches total, for each lighting leading up to the ninth candle which is given a distinct location, usually above the rest. While that's definitely a large part of the holiday, special prayers and fried foods are also incorporated into the celebration. One flame is lit on the first night, an additional flame is lit on the second night, and by the eighth night all candles are kindled.

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