Religions and Spirituality

At Hanukkah Menorah Lighting in Westfield, Union County Torah Center Says Goodbye to Mayor Skibitsky

ccfeacd53594571768d5_7ffabf2a89af7beede94_DSCN2482.JPG
A group of about 40 people gathered at the Union County Torah Center's menorah lighting in Westfield Wednesday. Credits: Leah Scalzadonna
417f4d4d1e116de9e6d0_212fc4dd81c2808981e2_18db42625862ec8a087e_DSCN2467.JPG
A group of about 40 people gathered at the Union County Torah Center's menorah lighting in Westfield Wednesday. Credits: Leah Scalzadonna
a1f6e847551e783ee004_DSCN2487.JPG
A group of about 40 people gathered at the Union County Torah Center's menorah lighting in Westfield Wednesday. Credits: Leah Scalzadonna
e5506edf4ae7b55d9564_DSCN2458.JPG
A group of about 40 people gathered at the Union County Torah Center's menorah lighting in Westfield Wednesday. Credits: Leah Scalzadonna
ccfeacd53594571768d5_7ffabf2a89af7beede94_DSCN2482.JPG

WESTFIELD, NJ – The Union County Torah Center said farewell to Mayor Andy Skibitsky during its annual menorah lighting ceremony on Wednesday evening at the North Avenue Train Station.

According to Rabbi Levi Block, Skibitsky (Westfield’s longest-serving mayor) has attended the menorah lighting every year he was in office. To honor his commitment, Block led the crowd in a rendition of “Siman Tov U’ Mazal Tov,” a Hebrew song symbolizing good sign and good luck.

“On behalf of the entire council, I want to say Happy Hanukkah,” Skibitsky said. “Thank you for the invitation all these years. I’ve learned a lot from Rabbi Block over the years.”

Sign Up for E-News

Skibitsky also expressed a wish for religious freedom this season.

“It was over 2,100 years ago when the Maccabees reclaimed the holy Temple in Jerusalem,” Skibitsky said to the audience. “Since that time, every year families and communities get together to light the menorahs and celebrate faith in God and the freedoms God’s given us. Sadly, even today, religious persecution goes on and on. It’s my prayer that the light from the menorah this season brings some people out of persecution so they can live their lives in religious freedom.”

After his remarks, Skibitsky climbed a ladder to light the shamash, the “worker” candle, in the middle of the tall menorah. The other two candles were lit by Issac Zaksenberg, a close friend of Block’s. Before he lit the candles, the crowd recited the blessings together.

“The lighting of the menorah is to publicize the miracles that took place during the story of Hanukkah,” Block said. “One was the oil that lasted eight days. Another was a military miracle, when a small Jewish army went against a huge Syrian army. So we light the menorah in public places to publicize this miracle. Every miracle that God performs shows that he created the world, he’s involved in the world and he can mix in whenever he needs too. It reminds us that God’s always there and to never lose hope.”

Despite frigid weather, about 40 people observed the lighting and enjoyed doughnuts and chocolate coins. As the ceremony drew to a close, they danced the Hora together.

“It’s very important for us to share our faith and share the light,” Westfield resident Annie Ashkenazi said. “It’s a family thing. I have four layers on to be here tonight.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Another Car Smashes into CVS on Morris Avenue in Union

April 21, 2018

UNION, NJ – For the third time in the past year, a car hit the CVS building at 2287 Morris Avenue at the corner of Commerce Avenue.

Union firefighters responded to a call at the CVS at about 12:50 p.m. Thursday.  According to Fire Chief Mike Scanio, a car had struck the building. The Union Fire Department Special Operations Team along with a township construction official ...

2018 Municipal Budget is on Collision Course with Principles of Financial Soundness & Stability

April 18, 2018

Having chaired the town council’s finance committee in the recent past, I appreciate the hard work that goes into developing a municipal budget for a town as large and dynamic as Westfield. But as I have expressed publicly and also to the mayor and my council colleagues, I do not support the adoption of Westfield’s 2018 municipal budget. Although the budget contains much that I ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_847ee9151bdce789833a_y

Sat, April 21, 9:30 AM

Westfield Area YMCA, Westfield

Westfield Area YMCA Camp Open House

Sat, April 21, 10:00 AM

Tamaques Park, Brightwood Park & Mindowaskin Park, Westfield

Westfield 2018 Spring Clean-Up

Giving Back Government Green

Carousel_image_28ada9d80beb9d6466b0_picture2_simpler

Sat, April 21, 1:30 PM

Westfield Area YMCA, Westfield

Free Aquatics Healthy Kids Day

Health & Wellness Sports

Westfield Police Blotter: Residence Burglarized & More

April 18, 2018

April 11, 2018 10:23 a.m.

Raymond Rodgers, 56, of Westfield, NJ was arrested in the area of E. Broad Street. Rodgers was arrested pursuant to an unrelated traffic investigation. Rogers was transported to Westfield Police HQ without incident. At WPD HQ, Rodgers was processed and released after posting the full bail amount ($250). Rodgers was arrested on the strength of an outstanding Westfield ...

The Secret to Managing Insulin for Weight Loss

April 21, 2018

Not too long ago I was sitting with my good friend, Charlie, and I asked him, "Hey Charlie, what's the easiest way to get rid of belly fat?"

"C'mon, Tony, you know the answer to that question." I was pretty sure I did, but I wanted to see if he knew something I didn't. Charlie continued, "The secret to losing belly fat and keeping it off is simply a matter ...

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse

By LIZ KEILL

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Edison Students Participate in Beta Test of Google Augmented Reality App

Students and teachers at Edison Intermediate School participated in a recent beta test of a Google application that uses augmented reality technology to explore the inner workings of plant cells, the functions and framework of the human skeletal system, and other educational subjects.

Edison Media Specialist Andrew Cusumano arranged for a Google representative to visit the school on April 9 to ...

Get Your Home Ready for Summer Before its TOO HOT

Finally, the weather is getting warmer and you are shedding those down coats. Now is a great time to start thinking about summer and getting your home prepared. Paying attention to a few maintenance items can alleviate painful repairs later on if you wait too long. The line ahead of you will build as the summer rush starts. So, let’s not wait.

Check your roof   (hire the expert ...

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

Hellenic Therapy Center

April 13, 2018

Dropping Off Our Kids At College – Learning How To Adjust

Hellenic Therapy Center

 

Whether your kid is a freshman entering college for the first time or returning back to college, there are so many emotions we experience as parents.  There are differences in a parent’s reaction to the departure of a first child, an only child or even the last child.  Feelings ...

Obituaries

Oct 21, 1944 - Apr 14, 2018
Kathleen A. Hertell passed away peacefully with family at her bedside on April 14, 2018. Loving ...
Read more

Mets Sign Patriots Pitcher Before He Can Unpack His Gear

April 20, 2018

BRIDGEWATER, NJ — The Somerset Patriots have announced that right-hand pitcher Scott Copeland’s contract has been purchased by the New York Mets.

So, instead of stretching out and getting in shape at TD Bank Ballpark, he's been sent to extended spring training at the Mets' complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

The 6’3” righty broke into the big leagues in ...