Giving Chanuka Gelt
Concerning presents at this time of year, the Jewish custom is to give Chanuka gelt (money) to the
children to train them to use their money for mitzvot, specifically the mitzva of giving charity.
The Rebbe explained, "The charity given by a child is superior in a certain way to the charity given by
An adult works to earn his livelihood, and thus can always replace the money that he has given away.
In contrast, a child does not earn his own money and has only what he has been given by his parents.
Nevertheless, his nature is not to stint, but rather to give
generously when he sees a person in need or a worthy Torah
Re-institute this unique Chanuka tradition in your family.
Awaken Your Core This Month
Awakening the core of our being must be reflected in a concern for the fundamental existence of
every Jew. This should be expressed in efforts to provide our fellow Jews with the necessities
required to celebrate the holidays of the month of Kislev [the 'Chasidic New Year' on the 19th of
Kislev and Chanuka] with happiness and joy.
Similarly, they should have the means to fulfill the custom which the Rebbes followed of giving
Chanuka gelt to the members of their household." (1 Kislev, 5752-1991)
Simply stated, this means that as we think about our own family's holiday celebrations this month, we
should make sure to help provide for other, less fortunate people in the greater Jewish family.
Every Jew should exemplify the teachings of the Chanuka lights in actual practice.
This will hasten the fulfillment of the Divine prophecy of
"even if darkness will cover the earth and a thick cloud the
nations, but on you will shine forth G-d."
As in those days, we should merit to kindle lights in the Third and Eternal Holy Temple - with the
coming of Moshiach.