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Igniting Jewish souls

Friday, 19 December, 2014 - 2:46 pm

Two stories took place this week with the traveling celebration of Chanukah on Vancouver Island, that made it clear that this project is much more than sharing the light of Chanukah.

The first encounter was on Wednesday in Duncan.  Following the lighting for the 2nd night of Chanukah, people were still gathering around the Menorah, enjoying doughnuts, and meeting friends.  A woman who was passing by watched for a little while, and then ran right over to me.

"Do you have a Menorah and candles for me?" she asked.  

I was pleased to tell her that we would be very happy to share with her a full Chanukah kit.

"Thank you so much!" she said with a big smile, and added, "I was adopted as a child and I knew that my biological mother was Jewish, but I never had the chance to do anything with it.  When I very surprisingly saw a Rabbi and a Menorah in the middle of town I decided perhaps now is the time to develop my relationship with my roots".

Twenty four hours later we were at a very nice Chanukah celebration at the City Hall of Campbell River.  At the closing of the ceremony an older couple walked over and introduces themselves.

"My family was Jewish" said the woman.  "After the war I became Catholic.  When we saw in the paper the notice about the lighting my husband thought we should go.  I told him that as a survivor I have only bad memories of being Jewish, but he said that I needed to attend to pay respects to my family, especially to my grandparents who were very observant Jews.  I'm very happy we came", she concluded.

On the way out they stopped by our Chanukah table and picked up a Menorah and candles.

The lighting of the Chanukah Menorah is igniting Jewish souls.

Comments on: Igniting Jewish souls

Marvin Sharpe wrote...

Chabad is the "ingathering" of Jews. Better late than never, Boruch Hashem.

Moishe Leib

Ireta M. Fisher wrote...

Your Channukah stories warmed my heart and gave me an inward smile.
Brachot. Ireta

Susan Ruth Date wrote...

Beautiful stories you have written for us all to share. Thank you, Rabbi Kaplan.
12/20/2014 wrote...

Both our eyes and our hearts filled after reading your Chanukah blog.

Each day we thank Hashem that the Kaplan family is on the Island.

May we all continue to have a freilichen Chanukah.

Meshpachat Shortt