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Chanukkah 2021/5782 at the LJS

The LJS Multi-Faith Chanukkah Celebration 2021

'Not by might, nor by power, but by My spirit...' (Proverbs 23: 18)

On Thursday 2 December, we celebrated our annual multi-faith Chanukkah event. Last year, we were all online, so this year it was wonderful to celebrate in a truly hybrid way and be able to have in-person guests too. As well as welcoming guests from all faiths, we greeted individuals online from around the world, including from India, Pakistan, Ghana and Israel. 

Rabbi Alexandra Wright started the evening with a warm welcome, providing an imaginative explanation of the Chanukkah story, which can be viewed here:

We then listened to the eloquent addresses of our four esteemed guest speakers. Zara Mohammed, the first woman and youngest ever Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, spoke about the challenges of being a woman in her role and the difficulties the pandemic has created:

Bharti Tailor, who was the first female Secretary General of the Hindu Forum of Britain and President of the Hindu Forum of Europe, spoke about the universal symbol of light. Rabbi Jeff Berger gave a brilliant exposition of the prophetic text which formed the theme for this year’s celebration. Harriet Crabtree, the Executive Director of the Interfaith Network for the UK brought together the words of all the speakers and addressed herself to dialogue, encounter and understanding. All four addresses can be seen here:


Rabbi Igor Zinkov guided the lighting of the candles with distinguished guests, and the shammash (servant candle) was lit by Eli and Rosa Wolchover from the LJS:


 Rabbi Igor then led the song Don’t Let the Lights Go Out:


 The event closed with Ann and Bob Kirk hosting a wonderful video tour of our synagogue:


The congregation then went to the Montefiore Hall for individually wrapped and Covid-safe doughnuts!

We were delighted that we were able to join together both in-person and online to celebrate this uplifting and illuminating festival of light, and look forward to welcoming you this year. 

From left to right: Rabbi Alexandra Wright, Zara Mohammed, Bharti Tailor and Harriet Crabtree

All photographs by Peter Singer for the LJS


More about Chanukkah 

For a guide to lighting the Chanukkah candles at home, with suggested prayers and activities, click here

To read a reflective article about the lessons of Chanukkah for our times, click here

Latkes (grated potato fritters), are one of the several traditional foods eaten during Chanukkah. For a recipe, click here

Mon, 26 February 2024 17 Adar I 5784