Mayor-elect Eric Adams celebrates Hanukkah in Ghana

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Eric Adams showed off his Brooklyn roots in Ghana Wednesday night, stopping by a religious center in the West African nation to honor a major Jewish leader from Crown Heights during a local Hanukkah celebration.

The Mayor-elect made the weeklong trip to mark the 400th anniversary of slavery coming to the US. He will be sworn in as the 110th mayor of New York City on Jan. 1.

At a Chabad house in the Ghanaian capital Accra, Adams spoke about turning the pain of slavery into purpose, a message that he said was “personified” by “the Grand Rebbe of Crown Heights.”

Grand Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson, who died in 1994, was head of the Chabad-Lubavitch Orthodox Jewish Hasidic movement that’s based in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. He’s credited with creating a global Jewish renaissance in the aftermath of the Holocaust.

Mayor-elect Eric Adams attending a Hanukkah celebration at a Chabad house in Accra, Ghana on December 1, 2021.
Mayor-elect Eric Adams attends a Hanukkah celebration at a Chabad house in Accra, Ghana, on Dec. 1, 2021.
Courtesy of Eric Adams

Adams, the outgoing Brooklyn borough president who also represented parts of Crown Heights as a State senator, talked about the Rebbe spreading “the energy and spirit of Judaism” by encouraging followers to open Chabad centers around the globe like the one in Accra.

“We are looking at the seeds that he planted,” Adams told the crowd in a video of the remarks obtained by The Post. The Accra center is run by Chabad Rabbi Noach Majesky, a Brooklynite.

Adams honored Grand Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson from Crown Heights, Brooklyn in his remarks.
Adams honored the late Grand Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson from Crown Heights, Brooklyn, in his remarks.
Courtesy of Eric Adams

On Sunday, the first night of Hanukkah, Adams attended a lighting of the world’s largest menorah in Manhattan.

“We need each other, no matter how challenging it is, we know New Yorkers are resilient, strong and we’re people of faith,” Adams said Sunday at the Chabad-Lubavitch event.

The visit to the Hanukkah center is part of Adams' weeklong  "spiritual journey" in Ghana.
The visit to the Hanukkah center is part of Adams’ weeklong “spiritual journey” in Ghana.
Courtesy of Eric Adams

Adams has described his Ghana trip as a “spiritual journey” where he’ll connect with his ancestors who came to America in a slave ship. Adams will be the city’s second African American mayor.

“In visiting Ghana and looking to find purpose from the pain of his family and people’s past, Eric sees inspiration from the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, who is from Crown Heights–Eric’s old district– and engineered a post-Holocaust Jewish revival for which he is considered the most influential rabbi in modern history,” said Rabbi Motti Seligson, public relations director for Chabad.org.

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