The Festival of Lights shines bright at Temple Beth Sholom

The Island Now
The miracle of Chanukah is very much alive this holiday season at Temple Beth Sholom

While this holiday season looks very different than last year, at Temple Beth Sholom in Roslyn Heights the feeling of connection to the synagogue and community is filled with hope and light.

The Temple Beth Sholom “Chanukah to You” initiative aims to provide different ways for to connect with one another both in person and on Zoom. This past Friday evening, Dec. 11, Temple Beth Sholom clergy were joined by families and teachers from the Early Childhood Center to light the second Chanukah candle outdoors in the temple parking lot.

The balmy temperatures and colorful sunset provided the perfect backdrop for the candle lighting ceremony. Families with young children enjoyed time together reciting Chanukah blessings and singing festive songs.

During this pandemic, finding ways to be together, when we are urged to stay apart, has been a challenge for everyone. Temple Beth Sholom‘s “Chanukah to You” initiative, including events such as the one that took place on Friday night, aims to help Synagogue families to be able to celebrate the Festival of Lights.

After sundown on Saturday evening, the Synagogue hosted candle lighting on Zoom, which included Chanukah trivia, and an opportunity for all to don their ugly Chanukah sweater. Throughout the week religious school children were encouraged to create their own Hanukkiah, a ritual object used to light the Chanukah candles. Other events included latke making and even a holiday-themed cocktail called a Menorah-tini.

And while it has been a challenge to remain connected as a community, Temple Beth Sholom’s leadership team continues working to find new ways to support community members of all ages during this pandemic holiday season.

This year, may the light reflected off of each Chanukah candle provide us with hope during this time of darkness, and remind us of or capacity to overcome and to celebrate together in the years ahead.

Jen Schiffer, Temple Beth Sholom, Roslyn Heights

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