Windy Chanukah celebration in Wellington

December 18, 2019 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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It wasn’t an equal contest today on the stage at Wellington’s Botanic Garden Sound Shell – Wellington’s wind v. a large Hannukiah. The wind toppled the candelabra, split it in half, smashed the glass candle-holders, and scattered the candles.

Mokauina Ngaro , Mrs Shifra Gerberg, Ambassador Dr Itzhak Gerberg, Mayor Andy Foster, Hon Alfred Ngaro, Rabbi Ariel Tal

But the show went on. Wellington Mayor Andy Foster, Israeli Ambassador Itzhak Gerberg, National MP Alfred Ngaro, former Attorney-General Chris Finlayson, Jewish community and interfaith leaders were staunch with lighting the eight candles – lined up on a table – in spite of the continuing wind gusts. The Hanukkah ceremony continued with singing, Klezmer music provided by The Kugels, and Israeli dancing.

Earlier, when the dignitaries gave short addresses, Mayor Andy Foster made a statement that gave comfort and pleasure to the Jews in the crowd. He said that he personally supports the adoption by Wellington City Council of the widely-recognised definition of antisemitism written by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, and will recommend it to City Councillors as a way of supporting the Wellington Jewish community, which he said had contributed a lot to the city over the years.

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