During the eight days of Chanukkah we place our Chanukkiot  ברשות הרבים – in public view – to fulfil the mtizvah of פרסום הנס —   making the miracle known.

Today’s Chanukkah Festival of the Arts was an opportunity for us to share with you the many miracles that happen at The Toronto Heschel School each and every day.

Chanukkah is all about נסים (nisim): We sing על הנסים ;  we declare  נס גדול היה שם  -“a great נס happened there.” For the past weeks our students have been learning all aboutנסים . We have learned that the word נס – which we usually translate as “miracle” actually means a “sign,” or a “message”. A נס is not a magic trick — God is not a magician who dazzles us with smoke and mirrors. נסים  are messages that are ever-present in the world God has created to make us think, ignite our imaginations, lead us to ask questions, spark our creativity, inspire us to do tikkun olam.

Enough oil for one night lasted for eight? A נס – sign that a little can go a long way – a reminder to make holy use of our gifts and resources; The Maccabee victory against overwhelming odds – a נס – a sign that a dedicated group of people can make a big difference when we work together for a meaningful purpose.

Today we had an opportunity to see how our students and teachers draw on their creative energy to inspire us with song, dance, and art. Each of these performances is a נס – a shining sign of the creativity, ingenuity, and joyous learning that happens here at Heschel.

מי ימלל גבורות ישראל – who can recount the heroic deeds of our people?

כן בכל דור יקום הגיבור – in every generation leaders arise

ובימינו כל עם ישראל יתאחד יקום ויגאל- but in our day, the whole of the people shall unite, and by so doing, be transformed.

Today, we all united, through the nachas of our children, to keep the flame of Jewish learning burning strong מדור לדור.

חג חנוכה שמח

Moreh Greg