OU.ORG's Chanukah section is adapted with permission from The Book of Our Heritage by Rabbi Eliyahu Kitov and other sources.
The Lights of Chanukah 5760 / 1999
This year's Chanukah has a beautiful special feature. Every year there is only one Shabbat Chanukah, when the "Kedushah," the holiness, of Shabbat blends with the "Kedushah" of Chanukah. Only when the first night of Chanukah is Friday night, "Layl Shabbat," as it is this year, are there two Shabbatot Chanukah. The first is the very first night, which ushers in the holiday, and the second is the eighth night of Chanukah, when the house is full of light - the Lights of Shabbat and the eight Lights of Chanukah. Then the "Pirsumei Nisa," the joyous "Display of the Miracle," which is the theme of the Lights of Chanukah, combine with "Shalom Bayit," the "Peaceful Serenity of the Home," which is the theme of the Lights of Shabbat.
Each night, after the first light is kindled, the one who is lighting begins singing the "Hanerot Halalu," "These Lights are Holy," as the remaining lights are kindled.
Translation of "Hanerot Halalu:"
"We kindle these lights to commemorate the miracles and the wonders and the acts of salvation and the battles that you fought in behalf of our ancestors long ago, at this time, through your righteous priests. And during all the eight days of Chanukah, these lights are holy! And we have no right to make use of them, but only to behold them, in order to give thanks and to praise Your great Name, for Your miracles, and your wonders and your acts of salvation."
When the lighting is concluded, Chanukah hymns are sung, in accord with the custom of one's community.