Lithuanian state radio and television reported the beginning of Hanukkah at the Choral Synagogue in Vilnius Sunday. On Monday, the first Hanukkah light was lit, according to LRT, by speaker of parliament Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen.
“As we light the Hanukkah candles every year, the Jewish community sends out a message of light and friendship to all of the Lithuanian ethnic communities and to the Jewish communities around the world. We want to remind people that we can only overcome the greatest challenges by being and working together, by communicating and trying to understand one another, to light the light of knowledge, understanding and tolerance. We can all be part of the light,” Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky said.
It’s customary for people to come together, have fun and share traditional Hanukkah treats such as doughnuts and latkes over all eight days of the Hanukkah holiday. Children receive traditional gifts. Faina Kukliansky recalls Litvaks traditionally ate their Hanukkah latkes with cranberry sauce.