Christmas is here, in a very odd year. Chanukah’s so last month – no confusing the two!
And many Jews are gathered for a family party, because this is the day that all of them are off.
Some Jews are gathered with Christian relatives.
Some Jews are going to the movies, and out for Asian food (that’s what’s open, right?)
Some Jews are feeling awkward about all the “Merry Christmas” greetings, and some are not.
Some Jews have really been enjoying all the wild lights in their neighborhood (that’s me.)
Some Jews are glad they don’t have to clean up the mess afterwards (again, me!)
Some Jews are working, having traded the day with Christian co-workers; they’ll be off for synagogue next Rosh HaShanah.
Some Jews hope the rabbi doesn’t stop by.
Some Jews are feeling really conflicted about all of it.
Some Jews and many others are working today: cops, firefighters, EMTs, doctors, nurses, people at the power company, people working transit, clerks at the 7-11. (Thank you!)
Some Jews are feeling left out.
Some Jews are ladling food at soup kitchens.
Most Jews and their neighbors wish for Peace on Earth, today and every day.
Because that’s the thing all of us can agree upon: there is too much hunger, too much poverty, too much war, too much disease, too much pain, too much sorrow, too much tsuris in the world today.
May the new secular year be a year in which we can find a way to work together against war, poverty, hunger, and pain.
On March 31, 2014, I and a lot of other rabbis are going to participate in Shave for the Brave, our way of fighting pain in the new year. If you would like to participate in raising funds for pediatric cancer research, CLICK THIS LINK and help us! Even the smallest donations will combine to make a big difference in the lives of young cancer patients and their families with better and more effective treatments.