Michelle Obama hosts Hanukkah celebration

Dec 12, 2011, 09:14 by R.E. Christian

U.S. President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama hosted a Hanukkah celebration at the White House Thursday, 12 days before the festival begins.

In remarks to an audience assembled for the event, the president acknowledged "we're jumping the gun just a little bit."

"The way I see it, we're just extending the holiday spirit. We're stretching it out," he said to laughter. "But we do have to be careful that your kids don't start thinking Hanukkah lasts 20 nights instead of eight."

Obama said the Hanukkah story "has given hope to Jews everywhere who are struggling."

"And today, it reminds us that miracles come in all shapes and sizes," he said. "Because to most people, the miracle of Hanukkah would have looked like nothing more than a simple flame, but the believers in the temple knew it was something else. They knew it was something special."

Obama said the Hanukkah season is "also a time to be grateful for our friendships, both with each other and between our nations."

"And that includes, of course, our unshakeable support and commitment to the security of the nation of Israel."

Hanukkah this year begins Dec. 20 and runs through Dec. 28.

Source: UPI