Jews across the world are celebrating Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, which honors the preservation of Judaism over the ages and highlights the story of how the Menorah Lamp miraculously remained lighted for eight days.
Rabbi Audrey Korotkin of Temple Beth Israel in Altoona talked about the meaning of the holiday at a Menorah lighting ceremony in the lobby at UPMC Altoona. She led employees and visitors in a Hanukkah song before lighting the Menorah Lamp.
The rabbi told the group tradition commands Jews to publicize the Miracle of Lights. "It's our way of showing our strength, the fact that we have survived for all of these centuries for all of these thousands of years as a Jewish people, when so many people were out to destroy us," she said.
"The fact that we have the opportunity to share this in such a public setting tells us about how much it means for us as American Jews to be able to worship the way we want," she added.
Rabbi Audrey says Hanukkah is a time to gather with family to celebrate history and tradition, as well as to give thanks. The holiday began November 28th and ends Thursday, December 5.