Rabbi Meir Kaplan (left) leads Victoria Coun. Sharmarke Dubow, Mayor Lisa Helps and Coun. Charlayne Thornton-Joe through a symbolic lighting of the menorah at City Hall on Thursday morning. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)

Victoria Rabbi lights Hanukkah candles at City Hall

Rabbi Meir Kaplan joined Mayor and Council to light a menorah for the fourth day of Hanukkah

Early on Thursday morning, Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps’ office at City Hall was decorated with a silver menorah, some jelly donuts, and a dozen colourful dreidels.

For the fifth consecutive year, Rabbi Meir Kaplan of Chabad Vancouver Island lit the menorah in a symbolic gesture for the City to celebrate Hannukah.

WATCH: Victoria’s Hanukkah celebrations open at the B.C. legislature

Usually the menorah is lit after sunset, which Rabbi Kaplan said carries importance.

“The message of Hanukkah is to bring light to dark places, therefore when the sun sets we light the menorah,” he said. “I was thinking it’s very appropriate for people of service, like the mayor and council, that it’s important to remember the responsibility of any people of service is to bring light to dark place; to find those places where people don’t have light and provide them with means so they can shine themselves.”

ALSO READ: Victoria’s Jewish community explores how its history holds similarities with local First Nations’

Rabbi Kaplan lit the central Shamash candle, and then four others while singing a blessing.

“I think being here in the city where there’s eight council members and the mayor, it’s like the menorah, ” Rabbi Kaplan said. “This is definitely an appropriate message that we all have to be candles and make the city brighter.”

Mayor and council then participated in a friendly round of dreidel, competing for chocolate coins, before feasting on Sufganiyot, or jelly donuts.

“More than ever there’s an importance for light,” said Helps. “It’s a real honour to be a small part of the celebration of Hanukkah.”

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: BC Children’s lottery offers luxury downtown Victoria home as a prize

The Choices Lotto has luxury homes across the province

Island teen climber seizes last opportunity to qualify in 2020 Olympic games

Brennan Doyle, 16, heads to L.A. for Pan American Climbing Championships

University of Victoria profs take home prestigious national teaching award

Brent Mainprize and Edōsdi–Judy Thompson recognized as a 2020 3M National Teaching Fellows

Alice Munro among Nobel Prize winners urging Trudeau to deny oilsands project

Alberta premier says Teck’s Frontier mine would create 7,500 jobs, $70 billion in government revenue

Victoria modular housing complex built to house homeless Indigenous women

Spa’Qun, or ‘Flower House’ will provide shelter and cultural support

VIDEO: Alleged shoplifter caught on camera at Sidney boutique

Staff at Cameron Rose Gifts seek the public’s help locating woman

Cheapest in B.C.: Penticton gas prices dip below $1 per litre

Two stores in Penticton have gas below a dollar.

VIDEO: Outpouring of worldwide support for bullied Australian boy

Australian actor Hugh Jackman said ‘you are stronger than you know, mate’

‘A horror show:’ Ex-employee shares experience at problematic Chilliwack seniors’ home

Workers are paid below industry standard at all Retirement Concepts facilities

Forest industry protests northern B.C. caribou protection deal

B.C. Mining Association supports federal-Indigenous plan

Youth-led report calls on B.C. government to create plan to end youth homelessness

There are no dedicated programs for youth homelessness at federal, provincial level, report says

UPDATE: Lockdown lifted at Nanaimo high school following threats

Nearby elementary school was in hold-and-secure

Trudeau: Time for blockades to end and Indigenous leaders to work with government

Prime minister says situation in Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute is ‘unacceptable and untenable’

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 18

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Most Read