Light is an important and beautiful symbol in Judaism. When G-d created the world, He declared, “Let there be light!” (Genesis 1:3) In the generations since then, we have taken light as a key symbol featured in many of our holidays, celebrations and rituals. On Friday night, we light candles. On Saturday night, we light a multi-wicked candle. On holidays, we light candles. In fact, we even have a little 8-day festival called Hanukkah that we celebrate by lighting candles. In each case, we kindle these lights to symbolically bring light into the world.
In our everyday lives, we bring light into the world by applying our knowledge and wisdom to make the world a better place. As a Jewish organization, the Lerner School is committed to sharing the light of wisdom through education. We kindle the light of knowledge and fan it into beautiful flames. As Jews, it is our duty to kindle light and illuminate the world around us, letting our light shine forth into the darkest corners. Sharing light does not lessen its brightness; sharing the light allows the light to grow.
Our greatest hope and joy is not only keeping our own light burning. Our greatest hope and joy is igniting the flames of knowledge in those around us so that the light of Judaism is never extinguished. We cannot live forever, but we can pass on the light to others so that those flames of knowledge continue to live and burn for generations to come long after we are gone.
As we prepare for the Festival of Lights, I wanted to thank each and every one of you for supporting Lerner’s mission to keep the light of learning and knowledge burning in our Jewish community. You help to make our light bigger and brighter, and our community will benefit for generations to come, L’dor v’dor.
Chag urim sameach,
Head of School