Just think of this – when was the last time Maoz Tzur was heard in Keidan, Lithuania, sung by a Jewish kid? Maybe 75 years ago!
When Laima Ardaviciene, the English teacher at Atzalyno Gymnazija in Kedainiai Lithunia, asked whether I could give a talk on Chanukah via Skype to her students, I would normally have sourced one of the many brilliant articles by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and shared this with them, speaking from my home.
As I only live a minute’s drive from our CHABAD Shul in Noranda, I came up with the idea of enlisting the assistance of Rabbi Shalom White and doing it at the Shul. I also asked a young and talented friend, Dylan Kotkis, to join us. Dylan has a friendly and outgoing personality together with a beautiful singing voice. He is a 15 year old student at Carmel School, Perth’s Jewish Day School.
Due to the 7 hour time difference between Perth and Kedainiai, 1pm (7pm here) was the best time for Laima and her students, so we held the meeting in the Shul’s library. A minyan was taking place in the sanctuary at the same time.
Here are some photos and video clips taken both from the Kedainiai and from the Perth ends. I synchronised and edited the videos and combined the footage taken by Laima and myself.
Rabbi White, Dylan and I spoke about the festival and Dylan took the Lithuanian students on a tour of the shul. Dylan sang Maoz Tzur for them.
Photos taken at Atzalyno Gimnazija
Photos taken on the Perth side
Screenshots and photos of the signs the Lithuanian students presented.