Let Hanukkah be Hanukkah

The candelabra should have eight candles in a straight line with a separate holder -- usually high and in the middle -- for the "servant" candle that is used to light the others.The purpose of Hanukkah menorahs is to publicize the miracle at the heart of the "Festival of Lights," when tradition says a one-day supply of pure oil burned for eight days after Jewish rebels liberated the temple from their Greek oppressors. Thus, most families place their menorahs in front windows facing a street.So … [Read more...]

Oy Joy! Merry Chrismukkah

At first it seemed normal to Michelle Gompertz to be sitting in an Indian restaurant listing to Kenny G recordings of pop Christmas carols.Then she grew disoriented. This Indian restaurant was in New Deli. She was surrounded by Hindu culture, but nobody thought twice about listening to the same holiday saxophone Muzak that would be playing in American shopping malls."I knew that Christmas was everywhere. But it really hit me," said Gompertz, the daughter of a United Church of Christ pastor in … [Read more...]

Deja vu Nativity wars

Another Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Winter Solstice season has come and gone, but the lawyers will be cleaning up for quite a while.Things got rough on the church-state front. Pick a zip code.Firefighters in Glenview, Ill., were ordered to take down their station's lights, tree and Santa when neighbors said they were offended.A pastor in Chandler, Ariz., was grieved when the public library set up a display of readings about Hanukkah and Kwanzaa, but not Christmas. Instead of adding … [Read more...]

Happy Hanukkah, no matter what

When Sabina Dener was a child in the Bronx, she knew it was Hanukkah when everyone started singing Christmas carols."When I was in school, we had to learn Christmas carols and we had to stand up and sing them, too," she said, describing the World War II era. "That's just the way things were. Hanukkah was a minor holiday we celebrated at home. It was about treats and games and that was that."Now everything has changed. Just look at this."It was a glorious evening to light the first candle of the … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X