What Do I Light?

The Menorah or holder used for lighting the lights should be attractive and clean. All 8 Chanukah lights need to be lined up on the same level, but the Shamesh candle must be separate!

The preferred way to fulfill the mitzvah of lighting the Chanukah Menorah is to use pure olive oil and wicks of cotton, just like the Menorah in the Holy Temple. Nevertheless, other types of oils, wicks and candles may be used, as long as they give a steady Light!

When Do I Light?

Right after nightfall, once it's dark outside (aside for Friday afternoon, when the candles are lit shortly before sunset, and before lighting the Shabbat candles). On Saturday night, Light your menorah after Shabbat ends and after Havdalah.

Where Do I Light?

Some people put their Menorah in the doorway opposite the Mezuzah, while others place it near the window. We do this to spread the Chanukah light! In these places, people are sure to see your Menorah, and remember the great miracles that G‑d performed.

How Do I Light?

We place candles in the Menorah from right to left, but we light the candles from left to right.

On the first night we light one candle on the right side. On the second night we light the new, candle first, starting from the left and moving to the right. We continue this way every night of Chanukah, adding a candle each night.

Say the Blessings for the Chanukah Menorah

Before you light the candles, make the appropriate blessings.

On the first night of Chanukah, Sunday, Nov. 28, 2021, (or the first time on Chanukah you perform this mitzvah) recite all three blessings. On all following nights, say only the first two.

Blessings for the Menorah in Hebrew

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה אֲדֹנָי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ לְהַדְלִיק נֵר חֲנֻכָּה

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה אֲדֹנָי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם שֶׁעָשָׂה נִסִּים לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם בִּזְּמַן הַזֶּה

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה אֲדֹנָי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ וְקִיְּמָנוּ וְהִגִּיעָנוּ לִזְּמַן הַזֶּה

Transliteration of Blessings for the Menorah

Bah-rookh ah-tah ah-doh-noi eh-loh-hay-noo meh-lekh hah-oh-lahm ah-sher ki-deh-shah-noo beh-mitz-voh-tahv veh-tzee-vah-noo leh-hahd-lik nayr kha-noo-kah.

Bah-rookh ah-tah ah-doh-noi eh-loh-hay-noo meh-lekh hah-oh-lahm sheh-ah-sah nee-sim lah-ah-voh-tay-noo bah-yah-mim hah-haym biz-mahn hah-zeh.

Bah-rookh ah-tah ah-doh-noi eh-loh-hay-noo meh-lekh hah-oh-lahm sheh-heh-kheh-yah-noo veh-kee-mah-noo ve-hig-ee-yah-noo liz-mahn hah-zeh.

Blessings for the Menorah in English

Blessed are You, Lord our G‑d, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments, and commanded us to kindle the Chanukah light.

Blessed are You, Lord our G‑d, King of the universe, who performed miracles for our forefathers in those days, at this time.

Blessed are You, L-rd our G‑d, King of the Universe, who has granted us life, sustained us and enabled us to reach this occasion.

What Is the Shamesh?

The Chanukah candles cannot be used to light each other, which is why we use the Shamesh Candle to light the Menorah. It's not one of the 8 Chanukah candles, so we set it in a place above the rest. The Shamesh can be made out of sweet-smelling beeswax. The lights of the Chanukah candles are special - only for looking at, not for using. It is good for the eyes - and the soul!

How Long Should the Flames Burn?

The Chanukah candles are supposed to burn for at least a half hour. On Friday though, we have to light them before it gets dark and Shabbat comes in. We generally use more oil, or bigger candles on Friday, so that the candles will stay burning, well into Shabbat!

2021 Chanukah Menorah Lighting Calendar

1. Sunday Night, Nov. 28

Blessings 1, 2 & 3


2. Monday Night, Nov. 29

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


3. Tuesday Night, Nov. 30

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


4. Wednesday Night, Dec. 1

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


5. Thursday Night, Dec. 2

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


6. Friday Afternoon, Dec. 3

Light your Menorah before Shabbat

Shabbat candles are lit after the Menorah is lit

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


7. Saturday Night, Dec. 4

Light your menorah after Shabbat ends and after Havdalah

Blessings 1 & 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3


8. Sunday Night, Dec. 5

Blessings 1, 2

If you did not light the menorah yet this year, also say blessing 3