Nov 27, 2013
By Jane Brown
Known as the festival of lights, Hanukkah begins this evening at sundown. For Jews all over the world, the annual festival celebrates the re-dedication of the Jerusalem Temple, the focal point of Jewish worship. Hanukkah is a relatively minor Jewish festival, but has gained importance as a family event in Western countries. It can fall any time between late November and late December, but this year it falls early, and in the U.S. coincides with Thanksgiving. Hanukkah is observed by the lighting of the nine branch Menorah – one additional light on each night of the holiday until the final night, which this year is December 5th.