Boro Parkers Take Part in Spreading Light at Annual White House Chanukah Reception

Boro Parkers Take Part in Spreading Light at Annual White House Chanukah Reception

by M.C. Millman 

President Biden and the First Lady hosted this year's annual White House Chanukah Reception yesterday evening.

The evening brought together eight hundred attendees, including high-level elected officials and Jewish leaders from across the United States. Boro Park representatives included Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein, Avi Greenstein, BPJCC CEO, and Ezra Friedlander, CEO of The Friedlander Group. 

While the hallways were lavishly decorated to resemble the inside of a candy factory for the festive occasion, a particularly poignant display was a glass menorah placed on a display table in the foyer. The menorah was recovered from the October 7 devastation and taken from the rubble of a home in Kfar Azza. It was displayed to serve as "a reminder of the flame of faith that endures from tragedy and persecution and is a symbol of the Jewish People's eternal spirit of resilience and hope that continues to shine its light on the world," as a nearby sign declared. 

As a recognition of that somber reality that made this year's celebration one that reflected a more serious note, many of the attendees wore ribbons or tags reading, "Bring Them Home - Now". 

The president's speech echoed along those same notes.

The administration is "working relentlessly for the safe return of the hostages," he told those in attendance. "And we're not going to stop until we get every one of them home."

Earlier in the afternoon, a select group of Jewish community leaders attended an important briefing on worldwide antisemitism, where attendees were given the opportunity to ask questions, raise concerns, and discuss efforts in a world that, as the president stated during his speech later, "Folks, were there no Israel, there wouldn't be a Jew in the world who is safe."

The president also promised that Washington will "continue to provide military assistance until they get rid of Hamas," whose actions of brutality he stated are "beyond comprehension."

 "We all have to condemn such brutality without equivocation, without exception," the president said.

The menorah was lit by Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, along with five White House staffers who are descendants of Holocaust survivors.

"Tonight was an extraordinary experience," Avi Greenstein, BPJCC CEO, shares exclusively with BoroPark24. "I am so grateful to President Biden and their administration for arranging for this event during these difficult times when there is so much fear and antisemitism at every corner. The White House reception was an opportunity for the president to reaffirm the strong friendship, support, and backing of the State of Israel and the Jewish people. We are grateful to have been invited among the many leaders of the Jewish community nationwide and to be on hand for this important opportunity to light up the darkness."

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