During the depths of December, we are in the midst of the fabulous Jewish Festival of Lights, Chanukah!
The eight days of Chanukah celebrates the miracle of the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. According to the story, King Antiochus' forces had desecrated the Temple. After the Maccabees retook the Temple, they began to rebuild it. Unfortunately, during the rededication ceremony, it was discovered that there was only enough oil to keep the Eternal Flame in the Temple going for one day. Despite the small amount of oil, the flame continued to burn for eight whole wonderful days, exactly enough time for more oil to be made.
Today, menorahs or hanukiah, beautiful candelabruns with nine branches, help commemorate the 8-day miracle of the oil. Each day an additional candle is lit, with the central shamash candle, to represent another day that the Eternal Flame burned bright. Menorahs come in all shapes and sizes range from traditional to decidedly modern styles.
Chanukah is a great holiday for children too as they sing fun songs, eat fabulous food and play with dreidels with their families!
Stamp credits: Pink Cat Studios