In preparation for The holiday which celebrates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem following its conquest by the Syrians in 165 BCE. The holiday is celebrated by lighting candles in a hanukiyah oon each of eight nights. Other customs include the eating of fried foods such as latkes (potato pancakes) and sufganiot (jelly donuts), playing dreidl (a gambling game with a spinning top), and, in present day America, gift giving., a time in the year when we welcome in the light of hope and liberation, Keshet asked Alex Weissman and his mom Cyd to write a blessing celebrating LGBTQ people and families.
Here I am, ready and prepared to light the Hanukkah candles, as “our rabbis taught: The law of Hanukkah demands that everyone should light one lamp for themselves and for their household. Those who seek to fulfill the obligation well have a lamp lit for every member of the household (from Shabbat is the Sabbath day, the Day of Rest, and is observed from Friday night through Saturday night. Is set aside from the rest of the week both in honor of the fact that God rested on the seventh day after creating the world. On Shabbat, many Jews observe prohibitions from various activities designated as work. Shabbat is traditionally observed with festive meals, wine, challah, prayers, the reading and studying of Torah, conjugal relations, family time, and time with friends. 21b).” We know we could be a household that celebrates the light of one. Instead, we remind ourselves that light increases with the opportunity for each of us to celebrate with our own hanukkiah. May we dedicate ourselves in all our days to honoring each other’s unique light, as it shines through the miracle of our gender and sexual differences. May our homes become homes of light for all people (adapted from Isaiah 56:7).
Cyd and Alex are quite the mother/son Jewish duo. Alex is an out queer rabbinical student at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, the former Social Justice Coordinator at Congregation Beit The holiday at the end of Sukkot during which Jews dance with the Torah late into the night. The yearly reading cycle of the Torah is completed and a new cycle is begun. Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah mark the end of the holiday season. In some congregations, the Torah scroll is unrolled in its entirety, and selected verses are read or sections noted., and a leading LGBTQ Jewish voice for justice. A longtime leader in Jewish education and advocate for LGBT inclusion, Cyd infused her children’s life with Jewish content that reflected their family’s values, from modeling how to hold space as a ritual leader for her son, the future rabbi, to sending her children out into the world with her own take on the Priestly Blessing: “May God bless you and keep you safe and sound.”