By Lee Chottiner
With the coronavirus continuing to spread, Louisville’s five synagogues are coming together to celebrate Chanukah as one community of faith.
The Louisville Council of Jewish Congregations (LCJC), which represents the synagogues, has announced a joint-virtual Chanukah program for Saturday, Dec. 12, called Festive Chanukah Celebration.
The program will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a havdalah service, a chanukiah lighting and singing, and, at 6:50 p.m. a performance by comedian Raanan Hershberg, a Louisville native.
Hershberg made his national television debut in January on The Late Late Show with James Corden.
“It’s a nice small example of what we can and should do together,” LCJC Chair Matt Schwartz said of the program.
But it’s not the only example. Since the LCJC was formed three years ago, representatives have met regularly, “talking about how we can help each other, things we can learn from the others and how can we better the community.”
They also cooperated on the Rosof study, an analysis of synagogue life in Louisville, paid for by the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence for Excellence, which was completed about a year ago.
The study made several recommendations to the synagogues for preserving and strengthening religious life here, including greater collaboration. The Chanukah party is an example of what the study advocated.
“We basically just thought about the idea, that wouldn’t it be a nice opportunity to bring the whole community together – members of congregations and not members of congregations,” Schwartz said.