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  • Menorah Erected at Vatican Site; Pope Receives Miniature Version

    A four-foot tall, six-branched menorah designed to commemorate the 6 million Jews who died in the Holocaust was permanently placed Tuesday in a garden that belongs to the Vatican. A 12-inch miniature of the menorah, designed by Israeli sculptor Aaron Bezalel, was presented to Pope John Paul II at his general audience the following day…. More ▸

  • Castro Attends Chanukah Fete in Historic Havana Synagogue Visit

    Cuban President Fidel Castro was an honored guest at a Havana synagogue recently, where he mingled with 200 congregants during Chanukah celebrations last month. The visit was Castro’s first to a synagogue, according to the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, whose local official in Havana led the Chanukah program. Castro spent about two hours in… More ▸

  • Chanukah Feature: Toy Stores Important Stop on Path to Lighting Candles

    Around 165 BCE, a group of Jewish warriors, led by Judah Maccabee, defeated the Greek and Syrian armies. The Jews reclaimed the desecrated Temple in Jerusalem, setting the stage for the celebration of Chanukah. Since that time, over 2,000 years ago, Jews around the world have endlessly and unsuccessfully debated whether the holiday is spelled… More ▸

  • Chanukah Feature: Menorah Madness Takes Off; Kitschy Kids’ Styles Proliferate

    How many ways can Mickey Mouse celebrate Chanukah? Five different Mickey menorahs, licensed from Disney, are now available to answer that question. If you’re more into Winnie-the-Pooh, there are two colorful menorahs displaying the whole gang from the Hundred Acre Wood to choose between. And the latest this year in kids’ character menorahs is the… More ▸

  • Roseanne Stages Own Version of Chanukah Play for Children

    On the sixth night of the Festival of Lights, Roseanne put on a Chanukah play — and the tale of the brave Maccabees and the miraculous container of oil may never be the same again. In the one-time matinee and evening performances, the director, narrator and author — listed as Roseanne Thomas in the credits… More ▸

  • At Candlelighting, Clinton Wows Kids with His Chanukah Know-how

    “This is a chaotic game,” President Clinton declared as the dreidels spun out of control on his desk. Surrounded by 14 students from a local Jewish day school — and as many dreidels — the commander in chief tried his hand at the age-old game Tuesday during a menorah-lighting in the Oval Office celebrating the… More ▸

  • Chanukah Ceremonies at Vatican, Arch of Titus Are Full of Symbolism

    Chanukah was ushered in in Rome this year with two unprecedented menorah-lighting ceremonies — one at the Vatican and one at the ancient Roman arch that is the symbol of the Jewish Diaspora. After Rome’s Chief Rabbi Elio Toaff chanted the blessings, Italian President Oscar Luigi Scalfaro lit the first candle of a huge menorah… More ▸

  • Israelis Mark Chanukah with Attempt to Break World Record

    Israel marked the beginning of Chanukah on Tuesday evening amid efforts to take holiday traditions to new heights. Among the menorahs lit in ceremonies around the country was a 60-foot-tall version constructed by the Lubavitch movement outside Latrun, which is near Jerusalem. Lubavitch officials claimed that the menorah, built with metal pipes, was the world’s… More ▸