Ethan's Eighth Night For Israel


A little over ten years ago, Scott and I sat around a long table filled with people from all parts of the Cincinnati Jewish community–the purpose was to define and create a fundraising opportunity to help cover uninsured medical costs for Ethan. Around that table, Eighth Night for Ethan was born, and volunteers worked tirelessly to bring the event to fruition for the first time. Interest in the event was great, and the community (local, national, worldwide) participated with donations, photos, and love. I remember being in that initial meeting and thinking that someday, when Ethan was healed, it would be so nice to turn Eighth Night for Ethan into a Foundation of Miracles and let him choose a direction for the donations to impact. Unfortunately, that dream hasn’t happened and Eighth Night for Ethan has been an incredible way to remain connected with the community who has surrounded us in love and support for all of these years.


This year is different. Our world is different. Our hearts are shattered over the horrifying events that occurred in Israel on the 7th of October, the war that has ensued, the hostages that remain in Gaza, and the rampant antisemitism that has swept across our nation and the world. These last several weeks have found us feeling numb, scared, and in shock.


If Ethan was more cognitively aware, he would certainly join us in being frightened for family and friends in Israel. This year, for the Eighth Night for Ethan, we would like to shift the donations to the Israel Emergency Fund, or another organization supporting Israel of your choice. The Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, through the Israel Emergency Fund, is providing assistance on the ground in Israel. These funds are being used to provide help to many in need right now, including, but not limited to, food and financial assistance to impacted families, the elderly, and homebound individuals, as well as emergency medical supplies for first responders and hospitals.


Essentially, we want to do something positive in the midst of these turbulent and disturbing times, and this feels like the right way to channel our energy.


On Thursday, December 14, at 7:30pm, join us on Zoom for Ethan's Eighth Night for Israel as we gather to light the Chanukah candles. Our Rabbi Meredith Kahan will lead us in blessings, songs, and readings, as we direct our prayers of love and hope to Israel. Let’s continue to be the light that is needed to illuminate our world and elevate ourselves from darkness and despair to hope. We hope you will join us.


Am Israel Chai.