This year, Hanukkah will begin on the evening of December 22 and end on the evening of December 30, 2020. In Hebrew, the name of the holiday is Chanukah which means “dedication.” Hanukkah is the observance of the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem by the Jewish people after their liberation from the Syrians in the 2nd century B.C.E.
What Is The First Day Of Hanukkah This Year?
The first day of Hanukkah this year will be on the evening of December 22, 2020. It is known as the Festival of Lights and celebrated with the lighting of the Menorah. Hanukkah is observed by families across the world by gathering around and lighting the eight-candle Menorah, playing traditional games like Dreidel, and of course, enjoying some delicious traditional treats.
The story of Hanukkah
The story of Hanukkah begins in the 2nd century B.C.E when the Syrian-Greeks occupied the land of Israel. The Syrian-Greeks forced the Jews to give up their religious traditions and required them to worship their gods. Jewish priest, Mattathias and his sons, led a small army in a rebellion against the Syrian-Greeks and eventually won the freedom fight. Now free, the Jews were able to rededicate the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
When the Jewish people lit the Menorah in the Temple, they discovered one small jar of olive oil left sealed with the high priest’s seal—enough to light for one day—yet it miraculously lasted eight days. This was known as the miracle of Hanukkah and is celebrated by lighting the 8 candles of the Menorah.
The Traditions of Hanukkah
Hanukkah is a joyous holiday celebrated in many different ways. Every night of Hanukkah the member of the family light the Hanukkiah (the Menorah) from right to left, adding one candle each night. The favorite Hanukkah game is Dreidel, where participants gamble with candies or other treats. Latkes, which are potato pancakes, are a favorite food of the holiday. Popular Hanukkah treats are sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) and hot cocoa. On the 8th and final day of Hanukkah, a large feast is shared with the whole family.
Hanukkah is an important holiday in the Jewish faith, celebrated each year to commemorate the liberation of the Jews and the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. Each year, families gather to light their Hanukkiyahs and observe the 8 days of Hanukkah with games like Dreidel, traditional foods like Latkes, and plenty of chocolate coins or gelt. The celebration begins on the evening of December 22 and ends the evening of December 30, 2020.
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