The eight-day Jewish celebration known as Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem during the second century B.C. where, according to legend, Jews had risen up against their Greek-Syrian oppressors in a revolt led by Judah Maccabee.

We celebrate the Miracle of Lights because the rebels only had enough sacred oil for the Eternal Flame to last for one night, but through divine intervention the oil lasted for eight nights. Jews have celebrated this holiday by lighting a special menorah each December for eight nights.

In 1994 my husband Gaston and I moved to Budapest where we celebrated our first Christmas with our non-Jewish Hungarian family. I was given a beautiful brass Hanukkah menorah by my husband’s cousin. But I realized that it was missing a crucial element, the Shamash, which is the ninth branch of the menorah, which is used to hold the candle that lights all the others.

Of course, I did not mention this at the time, not wanting to appear ungrateful for such a beautiful gift. However, every time Gaston and I went to the flea market I had my eye out for the missing Shamash. I knew this was futile, but I believe in miracles.

The following year in 1995, we visited Jerusalem to attend the opening of an exhibition, Victims and Perpetrators, at the Yad Vashem Museum. While there, Gaston and I visited the Israel Museum and in the gift shop, lo and behold, they were selling a copy of my menorah, complete with the Shamash. It was described as a replica of a 1930s central European Hanukkah menorah.

I asked the sales clerk if it would be possible for me to purchase just the Shamash, and when she heard my story she asked the manager, who came out with a big smile and gave us the Shamash as a gift.

That is the miracle of my menorah.

Linda Vadasz lives in West Tisbury.