People Gather In Portland And Hillsboro To Light Menorahs To Mark The Beginning Of Hanukkah

Hanukkah: On a frigid Sunday, hundreds came to celebrate Hanukkah’s first night and the lighting of the menorah in Pioneer Courthouse Square in Portland. The event, which was planned by Chabad of Oregon, featured speakers from the Jewish community of the Portland region as well as live music.

Hillsboro To Light Menorahs To Mark The Beginning Of Hanukkah

Inna Kovtun, a well-known refugee who left Ukraine nine months ago with her daughter Polina, age 8, was among the Ukrainian refugees recognized. They currently reside near Portland.

At Orenco Station Plaza in Hillsboro, the Chabad Jewish Center of Hillsboro sponsored its annual public menorah lighting event. Free latkes and doughnuts were provided, while fire juggler Rhys Thomas performed.

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The director of the Chabad Jewish Center of Hillsboro, Rabbi Menachem Rivkin, spoke on the meaning of Hanukkah: that one little light may grow to make a huge difference. The Maccabees’ rededication of the Temple, during which their one-day supply of oil miraculously lasted for eight days, is remembered at the eight-day Jewish Festival of Lights.

Hillsboro To Light Menorahs To Mark The Beginning Of Hanukkah
Hillsboro To Light Menorahs To Mark The Beginning Of Hanukkah

Miracles do occur in our day, and we have the power to make them so, according to Riven. “This candle has the potential to affect our family, our neighbor, our community, and our city. Never underestimate the strength of one candle. Never underestimate the impact of a single smile, nice deed, or positive action.

In 2014, the Hillsboro Chabad Jewish Center hosted the city’s first menorah lighting. That first year, Sonya Shepsis, who was present during the menorah lighting on Sunday, was also present.

We can safely and freely simply do our Jewish thing here, which is what’s wonderful about it and why I love coming back, she added. Shepsis, a Soviet immigrant to the United States, was thrilled to see Hillsboro Police and Mayor Steve Calloway at the event and dispensing hot beverages. “Affirming and welcome are the appropriate words for this, in my opinion.”

Hillsboro’s stainless steel menorah is eight feet tall, and Riven lighted the first candle while Calloway lit the shamash candle in the middle. Throughout Hanukkah, the menorah will remain in Orenco Station Plaza. Every evening at 4:15 p.m., a second candle will be lighted, but without the same ceremony and food.

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The Chabad of Hillsboro will have another public menorah lighting event at 5:45 p.m. if you were unable to attend the ones held on Sunday. Dec. 20 on Tuesday at Beaverton City Park.

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