What are your thoughts for today? Some think of it as Friday while some think more of tomorrow, i.e. Shabbat. Either way, it's time to say:
It's quite a special Shabbat this week.
This week is Shabbat of Chanukah and a time to remember the miracle of the oil that remained burning for 8 days while new oil was prepared to light the Menorah. It's also Shabbat Mevorach meaning the last Shabbat of the month of Kislev and the time to recite a prayer to bless the coming month. Next month will be the month of Tevet.
The image above of the Holy Temple is a reminder of this special time and what Chanukah represents. It's also a reminder that when the Temple stands in it's proper place, there is blessing that flows from there to the rest of the world. Just like on the last Shabbat of the month we pray for peace, blessings and good things for the month ahead, so too, the prayers and holy services that takes place in the Temple is all aimed at bring peace and blessing from Jerusalem out to the rest of the world. What a very special concept.
Shabbat in Jerusalem is starting to come in a tiny bit later again. Candle lighting this week is 16h03 (in Jerusalem - if you live elsewhere in Israel, please check the correct candle lighting time for you). Remember to light your Chanukah candles before lighting your Shabbat candles leaving enough time for all the blessings and songs if you sing them. Approximately 5 minutes is needed to complete the Chanukah candle lighting and be ready to light your Shabbat candles.
Shabbat Shalom U'Mevorach and Chanukah Somayach to all.