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Wiesel to Light Nine-Foot Menorah Tonight

This year, BU’s Florence and Chafetz Hillel House is celebrating Hanukkah in a bigger way than ever before — with a nine-foot menorah in Marsh Plaza. Tonight, for the seventh day of the eight-day Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, Elie Wiesel (Hon.’74), BU’s Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities, will light the menorah.

“The most significant symbolism of lighting the Hanukkah candle is Jewish education and the triumph of the Jewish symbol over those who wanted to take over that education,” says Rabbi Avi Heller (CAS’97), BU Hillel’s director of Jewish education.

“What [Wiesel’s] life, post-Holocaust, is about is the spirit of teaching, learning, and discourse, and the triumph of the Jewish people,” he says of the 1986 Nobel peace laureate and Holocaust survivor.

“So much of the holiday is about publicizing the miracle of Judaism’s survival,” Heller says. “We can do this in a way that brings us together as a community that is happy, joyful, and safe.”

On Tuesday, December 11, Dean of Students Kenneth Elmore will light the menorah and the Jewish a cappella group Kol Echad will perform.

Both tonight’s and tomorrow night’s menorah lightings will take place at 5 p.m. in Marsh Plaza.

Rebecca McNamara can be reached at ramc@bu.edu.