Tag Archives: Hanukkah

Hanukkah Party; St. Ann School Concert

Last Saturday was the final day of Hanukkah, and our Jewish community gathered to celebrate at the Temple!  As a Roman Catholic priest, I am not Jewish of course, but I was invited to come along and had a great time (as well as learning a lot – but they will have to forgive me if I am inacurate in my terminology or description of the event…).

It started with some music by a band of members of the congregation, including traditional songs, dancing, and even some rap in Yiddish by David Wesson!  Then some children (students of Henry Allen) presented a short play on “The Miracle of Hanukkah”.

Things got more serious with a commemoration of the fire that destroyed the previous temple building. However, the focus was positive.  Carole Sharoff and Lou Goldish told how an elaborate and historic hanukiah (given by leaders of the state of Israel to the American embassador in the 1960′s), was saved from the fire by being kept an extra day or two in the Unitarian Universalist church to which it had been lent.  Wendy Betts, a very talented performer, then sang a selection from the work “Voices”.

Rabbi Steven Lewis gave a brief and very interesting “D’var Torah” – a commentary on the festival, based on the Torah and commentaries.  (I used some of what he said in my homily at Mass the next day, giving due credit to the Rabbi, of course).  The ceremonies ended with the lighting of everyone’s hanukiot (a.k.a. menorah) that they had brought from home, starting with the aforementioned historic one. Then we all ate latkes, jelly donuts, and other finger food!

A few photo highlights are included below. For more photos, click on the thumbnails below.

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Here are some highlights:

And although Hanukkah is over, here is a great Hanukkah song:

And don’t forget:

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Urban Voices: A Choral Music Initiative from the Metropolitan Opera Guild
This program is made possible by a generous gift from the Popplestone Foundation.

- Fr. Matthew Green

Lighting the Menorahs

On the last day of Hanukkah, I had the privilege of participating in a Hanukkah party at the Temple Ahavat Achim.  I haven’t had time to get all the photos ready yet, but here’s one to give you a taste of the evening.  More will be forthcoming.  Here, the members of the congregation are lighting the candles of the menorahs they brought from home.

- Fr. Matthew Green

 

Origami from Friday night, on the tree

On Friday night I taught these four holiday decorations at The Hive. From top to bottom: a relatively simple Santa, a star-like ornament, a menorah, and a modular cube (made from six modules, each folded from a square of paper, and joined together without glue).

The origami class time for Tuesday at Art Haven is going to have to change from the 6:30 time slot I mentioned before, but I don’t have the details worked out yet. I will put up the info as soon as I have it.

- Fr. Matthew Green

 

Christmas, 1000 Origami Fish, and You!

Help us decorate Gloucester’s first (annual?) origami Christmas (or “Fishmas”) tree with 1000 origami fish!

The origami Christmas tree at the Museum of Natural History in New York – much more grandiose than what we are planning!

For years, people have been decorating Christmas trees with origami for public display in cities around the world. For example, New York City has two famous origami-decorated trees every year: one in the American Museum of Natural History, and another in the Japan Airlines offices on 5th Avenue.  I met with David Brooks of Art Haven and The Hive, and he loved the idea of doing one here in Gloucester!  The current plan is to display it in the front window of The Hive on Pleasant Street.

Our project has two special characteristics. First, we are making the whole thing – tree included – out of origami.  It’s not the first time it’s been done, but it’s not so common! Secondly, we want it to be Gloucester-themed, so it will be decorated with origami fish.  This honors both Gloucester’s spirit and history as a fishing port, and the ancient Christian tradition in which the fish is a symbol of Christ, whose birth we celebrate at Christmas.

We want to get as many people involved as possible.  In the spirit of the Japanese tradition of folding 1000 origami cranes, we are aiming for 1000 fish, so, we need a lot of help! Come to The Hive on Saturday, starting at 10AM, to help us fold origami

This is the fish we are going to make - in many sizes and colors!

This is the fish we are going to make – in many sizes and colors!

fish! We are folding a specific origami fish model – the “Twist Fish” by Gay Merrill Gross (from her book Minigami).  It’s very easy to fold.  I will be there teaching for a few hours, and I will teach a few other people so they can teach others when I’m not there.  We will have plain paper at The Hive that you can use, but you can bring your own paper too if you want to use fancier origami paper.  (You can get paper at Island Art and Hobby on Main Street, or at other art and craft stores.) Also, you can decorate the fish after you fold it – draw a face or scales, paint it bright colors, or whatever!

The tree itself is already in production. I spent several hours yesterday folding with David Brooks and Mary Ann DeLouise to get our origami conifer off the ground:

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Plus, next week I will be teaching two classes on origami holiday decorations! We will fold Christmas and Hanukkah themed models and geometric decorations (the variety of models depends on how we do for time). Folding materials will be supplied.

    Here are the dates:

  • Friday Dec. 14, 6:30-8PM at the Hive, for teens and adults ($15)
  • Tuesday Dec. 18, 6:30-8PM at Art Haven, for children ($10)

I will try to post a more detailed menu of models I hope we can fold.

- Fr. Matthew Green