Ostroff is one of the leaders of Hillel, Marymount Manhattan College’s Jewish club that focuses on community, culture, religion and Israel advocacy. The club is pluralistic and welcomes anyone who is willing to learn more about Jewish culture or religion and have fun.
This week the students of Hillel celebrated the Jewish holiday of Sukkot with “Pizza in The Hut.” The English translation of Sukkot means “season of rejoicing” or “booths.” The holiday originated in biblical times as a fall harvest holiday, but is also a time to focus on family and friends while enjoying meals in the sukkah. A sukkah is a little hut that symbolizes the temporary homes the ancient Jews created while traveling through the wilderness before reaching Israel.
This year, Marymount Manhattan has its very own sukkah, constructed on The Lowerre Family Terrace. Many people decorate the inside of their sukkahs with arts and crafts, and the MMC sukkah is no exception. On Wednesday, October 19, students came together to participate in the festivities, learn about the holiday, and enjoy kosher pizza.
“During Sukkot we wave a lulav and etrog,” Ostroff explained. “The lulav is made up of three plants: a palm branch, a branch from a myrtle tree and a branch from a willow tree. The etrog is a lemon-like fruit. When the lulav and etrog are held and shaken in all directions—north, south, east, west, above, and below—a prayer is recited to remind us that God is everywhere. There are also special prayers and readings we do as a community at synagogue during the holiday, but the most fun is gathering together in the sukkah to share our meals under the stars.”
For more information about Hillel at MMC, or to learn about other College clubs and organizations, please contact Kevin Croke.