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Hanukkah represents a daring innovation: the first post-biblical holiday. Talmud Shabbat 21a instructs us to light the candles at nightfall, and to increase the number of candles each of the eight nights. In doing so, we enhance our sense of wonder at miracles both past and present: the Maccabees’ military victory, the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem and the single cruse of oil that lasted for eight days, and, only 62 years ago, the establishment of Jewish sovereignty in the State of Israel. On a more personal level, Hanukkah also offers us a moment to acknowledge the miracles extended to us by a compassionate God in our own lives.

Here at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, our students and faculty are dedicated to kindling the Jewish spirit. We thank you for your support for our sacred mission: the continuity of our heritage, faith, ethics, and values as a source of light unto future generations and among the nations.

With heartfelt wishes for a Hanukkah blessed with peace and joy,
Rabbi David Ellenson
Irwin Engelman
Chairman, Board of Governors
Please click here to view a video of our cantorial students and faculty
performing “Al HaNissim,” which celebrates the miracles performed
for our ancestors as well as in our own day.

Please click here to support our students by
contributing to the HUC-JIR 2010-2011 Annual Fund.