Reaching its third year, the Rabbinical Centre of Europe (RCE) and the European Jewish Association (EJA) distributed an unprecedented volume of 100,000 Hanukkah menorahs to Jewish communities throughout Europe.
"We promised that even Jews that live in remote locations in Europe would get to light a menorah," RCE Director-General Rabbi Arie Goldberg explained.
The RCE and EJA toil throughout the year to benefit the Jewish multitude living across the continent. For the third year, at the onset of the month of Kislev, the number of menorah deliveries reached an unprecedented level. The groups distributed 100,000 menorahs with candles, dreidels, and a leaflet containing the laws and customs of the holiday in English, French, German, Russian, and Hebrew to dozens of Jewish communities in Europe to ensure that every Jew is able to light candles on Hanukkah.
The project is an extensive and unprecedented logistical operation, supervised by RCE Deputy Director-General Rabbi Yosef Bainhaker, together with the director of the BASSAD organization, Rabbi Yehuda Reichman. The process includes ordering tens of thousands of menorahs, packing them, and sending them to European countries from an enormous logistics center in Belgium. Delivering 100,000 menorahs is a record number in all the years of RCE's activities.
The goal is to spread the light of Hanukkah even in remote countries and cities across Europe. The menorahs which arrive by Hanukkah will be distributed in communities by shluchim (emissaries) and rabbis of the RCE and EJA, who consistently operate throughout Europe.
This year, to ensure that the menorahs arrive on time, Rabbi Yosef Bainhaker and Rabbi Yehuda Reichman personally monitored packaging at the huge logistics center in Belgium, where the menorahs were dispatched to the many destinations in Europe.
General Director of the Rabbinical Centre of Europe Rabbi Arie Goldberg said: "This is a monumental preparation for Hanukkah. Just as we have been dealing with all the Jewish needs of European Jews throughout the year, so now, as Hanukkah approaches, we have provided one hundred thousand menorahs that will illuminate the darkness in Europe."
Chairman of the Rabbinical Centre of Europe Rabbi Menachem Margolin said: "Despite the many difficulties involved in this preparation, we did our best to ensure that as many Jews as possible, in the most remote places, would be able to observe the significant mitzvah (commandment) of lighting the Hanukkah candles."