It could have been called the Festival of Balloons. Last year, on the first night of Hanukkah, more than a thousand blue, helium-filled balloons floated into the skies over Jerusalem. Attached to the string of each biodegradable balloon was a single piece of paper with a prayer.
As they drifted slowly upward, the balloons symbolically carried the prayers to heaven. Through a program called Miracles, Risin' on the Horizon, donors paid $5 each to write their personal prayers on a special form that was then tied to a balloon. The program raised more than $5,000 for Kids for Kids, an organization that helps Jewish children who have been victims of terrorism in Israel. As a sign of solidarity, several American Jewish communities- including those in New York, New Jersey, and Colorado- also launched balloons on the first night of Hanukkah.