Rabbi Szalom Ber Stambler, chairman of the Chabad-Lubavitch Jewish Center, was Andrzej Morozowski’s guest in the “Tak jest” program. He told what it was like when Grzegorz Braun extinguished the Hanukkah candles from his perspective. The rabbi was also present during today’s candle relighting ceremony. – I hope that the message is not what MP Braun did, but today’s ceremony – he said. – A huge wave of tolerance is coming from Poland to the whole world – added the rabbi.
On Thursday afternoon, the second ceremony of lighting Hanukkah candles took place in the Sejm. The first ceremony, Tuesday, was disrupted by Confederation MP Grzegorz Braun. Using a powder fire extinguisher, he extinguished the lit Hanukkah.
Chanukah was cleansed and Thursday it was lit again in the world. The afternoon ceremony was attended by, among others, the president Andrzej DudaMarshal of the Sejm Szymon Hołownia or the Speaker of the Senate Małgorzata Kidawa-Błońska. As TVN24 reporter Karolina Wasilewska reported, about 200 people appeared in the parliamentary corridor.
“These candles symbolize respect and freedom of religion”
The guest of the “Tak jest” program on Thursday was Rabbi Szalom Ber Stambler, chairman of the Chabad-Lubavitch Jewish Center, who was in the Sejm at today’s ceremony of re-lighting the candles, but also when they were extinguished by Grzegorz Braun.
The rabbi recalled that lighting Hanukkah candles is a long-standing custom in the White House and in parliaments in many countries. In Poland, the hanukkiah has been lit in the Polish Sejm for 17 years. – These candles symbolize respect, tolerance and freedom of religion – he said.
“I saw a cloud of fire extinguisher powder”
He told what the incident involving Grzegorz Braun looked like from his perspective. – I was in the next corridor, a glass door separated us. I saw this cloud of fire extinguisher powder, it was very visible. A lady came into our corridor, crying and explaining what happened, he said.
The event was witnessed directly by the rabbi’s wife and his children. The rabbi’s children had fire extinguisher powder in their mouths. Nothing happened to them.
The rabbi called Magdalena Gudzińska-Adamczyk, a participant of the Hanukkah celebrations who suffered as a result of Braun extinguishing the candles, a hero. – This doctor is a hero. She went to hospital and I heard that she was close to losing her sight, he said.
Rabbi Stambler: a bad initiative turned into a huge wave of tolerance
– I hope that the message is not what MP Braun did, but today’s ceremony – said the TVN24 guest.
– A huge wave of tolerance is coming from Poland to the whole world. I get calls from media outlets all over the world. What is important is that the whole of Poland could not identify with such things and condemned (MP Braun – ed.). The president, the Speaker of the Sejm and other people were present at such an important (Thursday – ed.) ceremony – he said.
“I was glad that they condemned it, but happening is not the right word.”
When asked about this event on Wednesday, Confederation spokeswoman Ewa Zajączkowska-Hernik replied that the Confederation’s position is that “we condemn this type of happening”. – We will discuss what’s next at the club meeting and please wait patiently for further announcements – she added.
The rabbi also referred to the penalties imposed on Grzegorz Braun by the Confederation. – I was glad that they condemned it, but I think that happening is not the right word – he said.
Main photo source: TVN24