Menorah lightings in the region strive to overcome the darkness of hate

A Monroe menorah lighting is scheduled for Dec. 11

As Chanukah begins, Rabbi Israel Stock invites residents to the annual menorah lighting near the gazebo in front of Monroe Town Hall on Monday, Dec. 11, at 6 p.m. The event will feature music and those who gather will be offered fresh donuts, chocolate gelt, dreidels and more.

Other Menorah lightings in Southern Connecticut are this Thursday, Dec. 7, in front of Trumbull Town Hall at 6 p.m.; in front of Stratford Town Hall Tuesday, Dec. 12, at 6 p.m., and across from Easton EMS on Wednesday, Dec. 13, at 6 p.m. For information, call 203-268-7700.

The Chabad Jewish Center of Shelton is organizing a public Hanukkah menorah lighting event with a massive nine-foot menorah at the Huntington Green, on Dec. 10. The event will feature an array of entertainment for all ages including the famous Chocolate-Gelt drop by the White Hills Fire Dept, a photo booth, as well as hot drinks and a selection of traditional Hanukkah foods.

A Festival of Lights

The Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory, launched the Hanukkah awareness campaign 50 years ago, in 1973 –- in the aftermath of the Yom Kippur War in Israel, and in the half-century since, the “Festival of Lights” has revitalized widespread observance of Hanukkah and brought it to the mainstream.

The menorah, and indeed Hanukkah –- with its universal message of freedom of the human spirit, freedom from tyranny and oppression, and of the ultimate victory of good over evil –- has as a result become a part of American culture.

“The Rebbe taught that not only is celebrating Hanukkah a vital part of Jewish life –- where it has become a potent point of light and Jewish pride and confidence for American Jews in the fight against darkness and antisemitism –- but also represents key American values, namely those of liberty and independence,” said Rabbi Shneur Brook.

“The holiday of Hanukkah underscores the fact that American culture has been enriched by the thriving ethnic cultures which contributed very much, each in its own way, to communal life, both materially and spiritually,” he said.

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