Dr. Lilly Filler, Chair of the South Carolina Council on the Holocaust will deliver the Keynote address at the 16th annual Isadore E. Lourie Hanukkah Menorah Lighting Ceremony at the State House on Monday December 19th, at 6:00pm.
This event is chaired by Rep. Beth Bernstein and former Senator Joel Lourie. Representatives of the entire Jewish communities will gather and participate in this celebration. Governor Henry McMaster, Mayor Daniel Rickenmann, and clergy of all faiths are expected to attend. The event is a project of Chabad of South Carolina and is co-sponsored by the Columbia Jewish Federation.
“Dr. Filler’s address presents the perfect opportunity to raise statewide awareness of the rising incidents of Anti-Semitism in the US” said Rabbi Hesh Epstein Executive Director of Chabad of South Carolina.
The ceremony is part of Chabad’s worldwide Hanukkah campaign, an initiative launched by the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory, in 1973. The campaign highlights and encourages the central theme of the holiday — publicizing the story of the Hanukkah miracle.
Today, the unprecedented public display of Hanukkah has become a staple of Jewish cultural and religious life, forever altering the American practice and awareness of the festival. This year, Chabad-Lubavitch will set up more than 15,000 large public menorahs in more than 100 countries around the world, including in front of landmarks such as the White House, the Eiffel Tower, and the Kremlin.
Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, begins this year on the evening of Sunday, December 18th and concludes the evening of Monday, December 26th. It recalls the victory of a militarily weak Jewish people who defeated the Syrian-Greeks who had overrun ancient Israel and sought to impose restrictions on the Jewish way of life and prohibit religious freedom. They also desecrated and defiled the Temple and the oil prepared for the lighting of the menorah, which was part of the daily service. Upon recapturing the Temple only one jar of undefiled oil was found, enough to burn only one day, but it lasted miraculously for eight. In commemoration Jews celebrate Hanukkah for eight days by lighting an eight-branched candelabrum known as a menorah. Today, people of all faiths consider the holiday a symbol and message of the triumph of freedom over oppression, of spirit over matter, of light over darkness. Additional information about the Hanukkah holiday is available at www.chabadofsc.org/Hanukkah.
About Chabad of SC
Chabad of SC offers Jewish education, outreach and social service programming for families and individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and affiliations. For more information, contact Rabbi Hesh Epstein, Chabad of SC, 803.467.3456 or visit www.chabadofsc.com.