Public Menorah Lighting

Happy Chanukah everyone! What a pleasure to be here this evening with all of you to celebrate Chanukah, the festival of Lights. What a wonderful sight it is to see so many people, young and old, gather here today for this wonderful celebration.

Welcome to this Historical moment as we celebrate the first annual Public Menorah ceremony here in Wayne NJ. Firstly I would like to introduce our local dignitaries;

The Honorable Assemblyman Scott T. Rumana
The Honorable Mayor Chris Vergano
The Honorable John Bartlett – County Freeholder
Wayne business Administrator Neal Bellet
Councilwomen Lonnie Millet Ryan
Councilwomen Lucy Eileen Riveira
Councilmen Rich Jastapski
& all the other dignitaries who have joined us here tonight!

As we prepare to kindle these holy lights we pay tribute to the heroes of long ago, the Maccabees whose courage and refusal to surrender in the face of terrible and overwhelming odds blazed a trail for the survival of the Jewish people and the freedom to practice our faith. At the same time as we kindle these holy lights we also pay tribute to all the heroes of Jewish history that dared to be Jewish, keep the Torah and its mitzvot and not surrender their faith when threatened by brutal mighty empires. Those empires have long disappeared into the dustbin of history while we the descendants of these brave people stand here today to continue the traditions that they were willing to sacrifice their lives for. Here we are today, in Wayne NJ standing strong and proud, holding the torch of Judaism that they passed on to us, ready to pass it on to the next generation. Not so long ago, these holy lights, of Chanukah were forced into hiding out of mortal fear of reprisals. In the darkest corners of this world, Jews braved death to kindle flames of hope and light during Chanukah. In the past Jews hid behind closed doors and drawn curtains to light the Menorah. And today we stand here free to celebrate our cherished traditions not only in our home, but as a community in a public celebration out in the open with the official blessing of this country and the participation of its elected officials. So as we light the menorah today we as nation also
give Thanksgiving, for the beauty of the freedoms we enjoy. This blessed nation, under G‑d was formed on the cornerstone of freedom for all. Like the story of Chanukah, the founding fathers of this great country left behind oppression & religious persecution to practice their faith in blessed freedom.
We also pay tribute to all the heroes in the armed forces who are in harm’s way, in strange and hostile lands risking their lives daily so that we at home can be safe from those who would destroy us and our precious way of life & liberties. And when we our done celebrating here this evening, it is our turn to become heroes. Go home and light your own menorah with your family. Bring light to your home, and our community. If you know a member of our community, whose house is in darkness on Chanukah, then go visit them, bring a menorah, some latkes, a dreidel, and some candles and bring some light into their lives. Become a lamplighter. If you know someone in need, light up their life by offering a helping hand. Light up the world with another mitzvah, another good deed. Finally we offer a prayer for the safety and blessing of our beloved and great country and for security and true peace in our beloved homeland, the land of Israel. Oseh Shalom Bimromav, May the Almighty watch over our brothers & sisters and keep them safe and sound and may we merit to see the full light of the Chanukah candles the light of G‑dlinness which will be revealed fully with the coming of Moshiach when there will be
only G‑dliness and goodness in the world speedily in our day. I would like to call up, in the following order… the next speakers, to share words of greeting on behalf of the community.

The Honorable Mayor Chris Vergano
The Honorable Assemblyman Scott T. Rumana.
Councilwomen Lonnie Millet Ryan
Randy Mark – Rabbi of Wayne Conservative Temple
John Bartlett – County Freeholder
At this time ask you to break open your glow sticks as we will make the blessings over the kindling of the Menorah in first in English

1. Blessed are You, Lord our G‑d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments, and commanded us to kindle the Chanukah light.
2. Blessed are You, Lord our G‑d, King of the universe, who performed miracles for our forefathers in those days, at this time.
We will now sing some songs and dance
Please feel free to help yourself to a doughnuts chocolate gelt, and a dreidel
Also I will be distributing Chanukah Gelt to everyone here
Also a big round of applause to our Dreidel man!!
Please sign into the sign in sheet