They Light Up Our World
The theme of Chanukah is to express our gratitude to Hashem for the miracles that took place on the Chanukah of long ago and to generalize this feeling of appreciation to all the “miracles” that constitute our lives today. This sentiment of appreciation was certainly felt on the third night of Chanukah when the annual HASC Center Chanukah Mesibah took place in the heart of Boro Park.
In some respects, it was no different than the hundreds of Mesibos that took place throughout Chanukah in Shuls, Batei Midrashim, Yeshivos, and at family gatherings. There were the traditional culinary delights, singing, dancing, and a featured performance by Nachas. On the other hand, it was extraordinary and truly elicited an expression of Tov L’Hodos LaShem. What one witnessed was several hundred individuals, some with developmental disabilities, others with physical handicaps, and yet others on the autism spectrum, all joined together with administrators, man- agers, coordinators, and counselors in a traditional celebration of Chanukah. Upon deeper introspection, the reason for gratitude can be attributed to the exceptional programs and homes that have clearly enhanced and advanced the lives of so many who would otherwise have been neglected and dismissed from the festivities of Chanukah. Instead, it was clearly evident that light has been brought to places where darkness existed, and the potential of one day’s oil lasting for eight days is a reality that can be seen through the realization of the potential that exists within each special-needs child and individual. Following the theme of gratitude, we’d like to thank Abe Eisner, president of the HASC Center Board of Directors, Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein, Councilman Kalman Yeger, and Richie Taylor for attending our Mesiba, which greatly enhanced the occasion for all.