Hanukkah has become a beloved celebration amongst Jewish people around the world. On the first night of Hanukkah, family and friends come together to light the menorah and to bless each other with wishes for peace, health and joy for the eight days of festivities to come. An essential part of the ceremony is the blessings said before and after the lighting of the menorah.
Blessings Before Lighting the Menorah
Three blessings are recited prior to kindling the menorah on the first night of Hanukkah. The first blessing is a proclamation of thanks to God for the commandment to kindle the Hanukkah lights: Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu l’hadlik ner shel Hanukkah.
The second blessing is a prayer for the restoration of the Temple in Jerusalem: Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, she-asa nissim l’avoteinu bayamim hahem bazman hazeh.
The third blessing is a proclamation that God gave a special gift from the House of David and a special gift from the priests of the House of Aaron: Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, she-hechezarta bi nishmati b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al mitzvat ner shel Hanukkah.
Blessings After Lighting the Menorah
After kindling the menorah, a single blessing is recited: Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha’olam she-hecheyanu vekiyemanu vehigenu lazman hazeh.
This blessing is a brief prayer of thanksgiving for bringing us to the present time to celebrate the Hanukkah holiday.
The richness of Jewish life is evident in the beautiful blessings recited on the first night of Hanukkah. Although the original miracle took place over two thousand years ago, the blessings draw on the themes of Divine providence and deliverance to inspire and enlighten Jews today. The powerful words bring a special warmth and comfort to observant communities all around the world.
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Last update 2023-11-22. Price and product availability may change.