Northborough gathers to light menorah, celebrate Hanukkah


Northborough gathers to light menorah, celebrate Hanukkah
Select Board Chair Mitch Cohen lights the menorah. (photo/Evan Walsh)

NORTHBOROUGH — On Dec. 13 — the seventh night of Hanukkah — Northborough community members gathered on Blake Street to light the menorah.

“This has been an especially hard year for those of many cultures, including Jews. Locally, we’ve struggled to keep important religious holidays on the calendar. Nationally, the rich and powerful openly support antisemitic ideology in ways not seen in 80 years… The horrific situation in and around Israel is the most challenging time to be Jewish in my entire life. Many of us have family and friends directly impacted by the events of Oct. 7,” Select Board Chair Mitch Cohen said. 

Although Cohen described the darkness, the night’s theme was “turning darkness into light.” Dozens of community members, local government officials, and State Representative Kate Donaghue (D-Westborough) gathered around the menorah. Attendees snacked on jelly donuts while the menorah was being lit.

“All of us being together… adds much needed light to our collective darkness,” Cohen said.

This was Northborough’s third annual menorah-lighting event.

Cohen also shared remarks from Rabbi Michael Swarttz — of Westborough’s Beth Tikvah Synagogue — who could not attend the event due to COVID-19. 

“It has been an incredibly challenging past few months for Israel and for Jewish people all over the world. Hanukkah teaches us about the resilience of the Jewish spirit and the human spirit. It teaches us that precisely when it may seem hardest we can overcome oppression and we can overcome obstacles if we remain strong, resolved, and proud of who we are… We insist that goodness and light can triumph in a dark world,” Cohen said on behalf of Swarttz.

“There is something profound about a tradition that obligates me to light candles in terms of darkness,” Cohen read while starting to light the menorah.

Northborough gathers to light menorah, celebrate Hanukkah
The Northborough community gathered for a menorah lighting on Dec. 13. (Photo/Evan Walsh)

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