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Public invited to Chanukah celebration planned for City Hall

Menorah will be lit on Dec. 14 with food and activities planned
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Mayor Cam Guthrie lights the menorah during last year's Jewish Chanukkah celebration at Guelph City Hall. GuelphToday file photo

Guelph's Jewish community and members of the public will celebrate the coming of Chanukah at a ceremony open to all on Dec. 14 in the City Hall lobby.

Chabad of Guelph and Beth Isaiah Synagogue will ignite a public nine-foot Hanukkah menorah. The event begins at 5:30 p.m.

Chanukah, the Festival of Lights, begins this year on the evening of Dec. 24 and concludes the evening of Jan. 1.

A press release from Chabad of Guelph and Beth Isaiah Synagogue said the celebration marks the victory over 21 centuries ago of the Jewish victory over the Syrian Greeks who had overrun ancient Israel.Upon recapturing the Temple, the Jewish people found only one jar of undefiled oil, enough to burn for one day, but it lasted miraculously for eight.

In commemoration Jews celebrate Chanukah for eight days by lighting an eight-branched candelabra known as a Menorah.

The City Hall ceremony, organized by Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Raphi Steiner and Beth Isaiah Synagogue, will feature City of Guelph Mayor Cam Guthrie and other elected officials. Following the menorah lighting ceremony attendees will be treated to Chanukah delicacies, including latkas (potato pancakes), donuts, and chocolate coins, as well as crafts and activities for the kids, like donut decorating and the making of Chanukah candles.

“The message of Hanukkah is the message of light,” added Rabbi Steiner. “The nature of light is that it is always victorious over darkness. A small amount of light dispels a lot of darkness. Another act of goodness and kindness, another act of light, can make all the difference.”

For more information about Hanukkah and a local schedule of events visit www.JewishGuelph.com/Hanukkah or www.guelphsynagogue.ca.