Chanukah (alternately spelled Hanukkah), meaning “dedication” in Hebrew, refers to the joyous eight-day celebration during which Jews commemorate the victory of the Macabees over the armies of Syria in 165 B.C.E. and the subsequent liberation and “re-dedication” of the Temple in Jerusalem.
Modern celebrations of Hanukkah focus on family and friends and include the lighting of the Hanukkah menorah (also called a hanukkiyah); singing and playing special songs and games (dreidel); and eating foods prepared in oil including latkes (potato pancakes) and sufganiyot (donuts).
This year, Hanukkah is celebrated from the evening of Thursday, December 7 until the evening of Thursday, December 14, 2023.
Also called the Festival of Lights, the holiday brings light, joy, and warmth to our homes and communities as we celebrate with candles, food, family, and friends. Light comes literally, with the lighting of an additional candle each day, and metaphorically, through a newer emphasis on charitable donations and a commitment to tikkun olam (repairing the world) during the holiday.
Chanukah at Congregation Emeth
In past years, congregation families would share a potluck dinner in the synagogue social hall on the Friday night during Chanukah, followed by everyone bringing their chanukiyah (or menorahs, the Nine-branched candelabra used during the celebration) to the front of the sanctuary and lighting the candles together before an Erev Shabbat (Friday evening) service. The congregation has also led community celebrations of Chanukah in downtown Morgan Hill, lighting the giant chanukya along with the community’s Christmas Tree outside of the Community Center. Like other groups, the congregation has shifted to innovative online programming during the pandemic to be able to come together and celebrate while social distancing.
For more information about the events or other information about Congregation Emeth, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrate Chanukah with Congregation Emeth
- 11/29: Community Hanukkah Party at Booksmart, 4:30pm
- 12/8: Hanukkah Service & Dinner, 6:00pm
- 12/10: Sisterhood Hanukkah Brunch, 11am
- 12/12: Hanukkah Gift of Self-Care: Chair Yoga & Guided Meditation, 3:30pm
- 12/14: Outdoor Menorah Lighting, 5:30pm