Chanukah, National Menorah, Rabbi Levi Shemtov
Rabbi Levi Shemtov, executive vice president of American Friends of Lubavitch (Chabad) with essay-contest winner Mushka Landa at the 2017 National Hanukkah Menorah lighting ceremony on the Ellipse, just across from the White House in Washington D.C. on the first night of the eight-day Jewish holiday in chilly weather on Tuesday December 12, 2017. The student of the Southern Connecticut Hebrew Academy of Fairfield, Connecticut, read her winning essay on the meaning of Hanukkah. Hanukkah always begins at sunset on the 25th day of the month of Kislev according to the Jewish lunar calendar.
The National Menorah Lighting dates to 1979 when Jimmy Carter was president. Hanukkah celebrates the Jewish Maccabees' military victory over Greek-Syrian oppression more than 2,000 years ago. A candle is lit each night of the eight-day celebration, commemorating the miracle of one day's supply of oil lasting a full eight days in the lamp following the re-dedication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. (Photo by Jeff Malet)