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Jewish people of Redbridge begin their Chanukah celebrations

PUBLISHED: 11:42 16 December 2014 | UPDATED: 17:20 16 December 2014

Pupils from Clore Tikva School in Barkingside, lighting the menorah as part of Chanukah

Pupils from Clore Tikva School in Barkingside, lighting the menorah as part of Chanukah

Archant

The Jewish people of Redbridge will begin celebrating Chanukah – the festival of lights – on Wednesday.

The eight-day festival, dating back 2,200 years, reminds Jews of Antiochus, a Syrian king, who tried to make them worship Greek gods.

A small group of Jews, called the Maccabees, rebelled and after a three-year battle they recaptured Jerusalem from the Syrians.

Chanukah is celebrated by lighting one candle on the Chanukah – an eight-stemmed candelabrum – each day.

Rabbi David Hulbert, of Bet Tikvah synagogue, in Perrymans Farm Road, Newbury Park, said: “As a rabbi I have already been absolutely ‘Chanukahed’ off my feet.

“It is another Jewish festival which commemorates historical events

“Being this time this time of year when it is cold and dark – it is time for food, presents and a lot of parties.”

Rabbi Hulbert reminded Jews of the ‘huge’ contemporary relevance of present day Syria where religious minorities are being persecuted.

“People in Syria are imposing their religious beliefs on others,” he said.


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