Despite Blackout, the Jews of Kharkiv had Light and Joy

When twenty-one rockets knocked out the city’s electricity and shut down the subway, residents wondered what would be with Purim. Yet, all of this didn’t stop hundreds from coming to celebrate at Chabad of Kharkiv.

Twenty one rockets hit the electricity in Kharkiv Ukraine on Friday morning plunging the city into a blackout. The question on everyone’s mind was would the Jews of Kharkiv have “light and joy” on Purim? 

The subways were at a standstill and the streets at night pitch black, but that didn’t stop hundreds of the Jews in Kharkiv, young and old, from coming to celebrate Purim in Royal Style!

Everyone got mishloach manos and entered the shule which had been turned into a royal palace. Tefillin were put on non-stop in one corner as a long line grew for those who wanted a royal family picture.

Mayor Igor Terekhov thanked Rabbi Moshe Moskovitz and the Jewish Community for all they do for the city and wished everyone a happy Purim with fervent wishes that like on Purim good will be victorious over evil.

 The message of Purim and light shining over darkness was felt in the air. “Rockets can destroy physical light but cannot extinguish the lights burning in our souls and the spiritual good and kindness that we can do for others,” said Rabbi Moskovitz.

Everyone joined in prayer for the return of the hostages and peace in Israel and in Ukraine.

As the Megilla was read, the Purim story was more real than ever in Kharkiv this year. And as each and everyone left the shul with a bright smile on their faces into the dark night, they took with them the timeless message that there would be “orah vesimcha vesasson viyekar,” light and happiness, joy and glory.

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