Chanukah, the Jewish winter festival, was celebrated yesterday in the European Commission. During the festival candles are lighted during eight days in memory of the rededication of the temple in Jerusalem in the 2nd century BCE after a battle for freedom of religion and national independence.
According to legend a miracle happened in the temple and a small urn of olive oil to light the menorah lasted for eight days. Today Chanukah is one of the most joyous holidays in Jewish culture, celebrated by religious and secular people alike, commemorating the triumph of light over darkness and expressing hope for a better future.
“Many religious holidays across the world are celebrated at home. I believe that what makes Chanukah so special is that it moves beyond the private space, sharing the light with everyone,” said Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation.
Talking at a ceremony in the headquarters of the European Commission, he mentioned his meetings with the late Israeli president Shimon Peres and the current president Reuven Rivlin.
Each evening a light is added. “The EU shares the same values that are symbolised by the Chanukah lights,” Moedas said. This year’s celebration was also held in honour of the 70th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The event was organised by the Brussels-based European Jewish Community Centre in cooperation with the European Commission. The Chanukah lights will stay at Schuman Square until the last day of Chanukah on 10 December.
The Brussels Times