What does Chanukah mean to you?

 

Chanukah is the Festival of Lights celebrating the miracle that occurred after the second temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in the 2nd Century BCE.  The Maccabees rededicated the temple by lighting the menorah with just enough oil to burn for one day.  It would take eight days for the new olive oil to be pressed and ready to use but the miracle was that this one tiny amount of oil lasted the full eight days.

Chanukah means different things to different people and probably the meaning of it will differ as we go through the different stages in our lives.  As children we wait patiently each night (if you are lucky) to see which gift you will get, as we become parents we wait to see the excitement on the faces of our children and then grandchildren.  How many doughnuts can we eat?  Do we go to a different bakery each day to do the taste test?  Did you know that Emunah provides 8,300 doughnuts to the children and families in our care.  Do we really stop and consider the greater significance of the miracle and can we create our own miracles today?

At Emunah we call the 10,000 at risk and vulnerable children and families our miracles.   They are miracles because they have been shown the light that the Emunah centres gives them on a daily basis whether it be through our day care centres, high schools, residential centres or crisis and intervention centres.  Our therapists and counsellors shine the light on each and every person enabling them to grow and flourish and believe in themselves and realise their full potential and become well balanced, independent contributing members of society.

You are our miracles too.  You help us to provide for these children and families and we will continue to do so.  The greatest gift of Chanukah is shining light on those less fortunate than ourselves.  Anne Frank said “Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”  Each of our miracles are their own candle and in their own ways show us how they are they are shining brightly defying the darkness.

Emunah wishes each and every one of you Chanukah Sameach full of light and joy.