The Gantseh Megillah

Happy Chanukah
December 1, 2000

This issue marks the end of the first year of The Gantseh Megillah. And what a year it has been! As many of you know, this newsletter is an off-shoot of the original Glossary of Yiddish Words and Expressions which is as popular as ever and continues to grow as suggestions for additional entries are submitted by many readers and friends. Of course I urge all of you to feel free to send me more of the words and expressions that are a part of your experience with the Yiddish language. I am happy to add them whenever I do a periodic update.

Although much fighting and struggling continues in the Middle East, I have decided to stay with the spirit of Chanukah and the theme of miracles. A great deal of email has been coming in offering various points of view concerning the seemingly never ending bloodshed between the Palestinians and the Israelis. Many of the opinions seem to revolve around the utter hopelessness of ever achieving piece with our enemies.

Here we are, right this moment approaching the holiday season which includes our beautiful celebration of Chanukah. We must remember that the celebration of Chanukah is all about miracles. Throughout the history of the Jewish people we have always been blessed with miraculous interventions by God when at times our situation looked hopeless. This is not the time to lose hope and to throw our hands up in despair. It IS time to rekindle our belief in the power of miracles as we light the colourful candles on our menorahs. The situation Israel finds itself in today with the Palestinians is no less susceptible to the intervention of God’s hand than any other time in the history of our people. Let us all show our true belief in the festival of Chanukah by leaving our hearts and minds open to another miracle intervention. I ask all of you to join me in a prayer this Chanukah for God’s miraculous hand in finding a solution to the tragic situation confronting us today. Let’s keep the miracle of Chanukah alive in our hearts and minds.

Speaking of miracles, there is just one more I would like to ask for at this time. If there is some way that the United States Presidential Election could finally come to an end in an honest and ethical manner, many people including myself would be extremely grateful. That is ALL I have to say on this subject for the moment!

As I have mentioned previously, Arnold and I are working on some new and exciting innovations for the second year of The Gantseh Megillah. Our goal is a total redesign of the newsletter from top to bottom. The first edition of the “New Gantseh Megillah” will be making its appearance during the third week of January 2001. Of course, you will receive a personal notice as soon as this issue is available for your reading pleasure. In the meanwhile, please enjoy this current edition. Don’t forget to send in your thoughts and comments to the “letters to the editor” department at . I really do appreciate reading your thoughts, ideas and comments.

Speaking of your thoughts and comments; last month I asked people to respond by choosing one of four responses to the following statement:
“I believe that a lasting peace in the Middle East::
Here are the responses.
is an impossible dream – 13 16%
will not be reached because the Palestinians cannot be trusted – 13 16%
must be accomplished in order to stop the bloodshed at any cost – 29 36%
will be a reality sometime in the future, but not right now – 26 32%

Thank you to the 81 people who took the time to offer their opinion on this important and timely matter.
Arnold and I wish to take this opportunity to wish each and every one of our Gantseh Megillah family and friends a joyous and festive Chanukah. May the year 2001 be as bright and colourful as the lights dancing on your menorah.

My love to all of you,

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