Wednesday, December 1, 2010
On Chanukah, we celebrate the Maccabees' (small Jewish army's) victory over the evil Antiochus (Assyrian ruler) in days of ole We're talking really ole, nearly 200 years before Jesus' birth or the year 0.
At the end of the battle, as the story goes, the Maccabees entered the Holy Temple that had been savagely destroyed. One tiny cruse of oil remained, and this amount miraculously provided light that allowed for sufficient time to rebuild and rededicate the Temple.
In a world where anti-Semitism - and oppression, in a more global sense - thrives, we are deeply grateful for our freedom to worship publicly (or not). We pray and strive for religious freedom for the Jewish people and all who are oppressed.
Of course, no Jewish holiday is without yummy foods. Chanukah is about deep frying; we use lots of that holy oily stuff called oil. To get a taste of Chanukah, I highly recommend picking up a Potato Pancake/Latke Mix at your local supermarket. You can most likely find these in the Kosher/Ethnic Foods section. Manischewitz and Streit's are two brands, but it's all the same. You just add water and eggs, then get cooking. Mix in a few onion shards, and they'll look homemade. I like to douse mine in the sour cream-apple sauce combination. Of course, I've even enjoyed chocolate chip latkes, but that might not be your thing.
Happy Chanukah! xo