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November 27, 2007 eNewsletter

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Nov. 27, 2007

Dear friend,

Every year, I don't think about Hanukkah until Thanksgiving is over. And every year, it seems like Hanukkah is a lot sooner than I thought it was going to be (even when I have it marked on about four different calendars). This year is no different. Hanukkah starts a week from tonight, if you can believe it.

For interfaith families, the arrival of Hanukkah can mean joy, anxiety or something in between. In the coming weeks, we'll be publishing more articles on Hanukkah, Christmas and talking about Jesus in your interfaith family.


December Holidays

Our recent December Holidays Survey produced some surprising results:

  • Fewer than half of interfaith families raising Jewish children have Christmas trees at home.
  • Interfaith families where the woman is not Jewish do a lot more Christmas "stuff" at home than families where the woman is Jewish.
  • Nearly half of inmarried Jewish families participate in Christmas celebrations in some way.

For more, read What We Learned from the 2007 December Holidays Survey. (Also available in Word format.)

Nora Raleigh Baskin felt guilty over doing even a little Christmas, so she decided to do Hanukkah "big." So what if her dreidels caught fire?

He embraced Hanukkah, but upon seeing their first tree, she burst out crying. Find out how Sarah and Devin Callahan came to The Christmas Compromise.


Growing Up in an Interfaith Family

Raised both Baptist and Jew, now Jennifer Gordon is neither. Read Mixed Blessings: A Religious Journey That Has Led Nowhere.


Food

Josh Lambert helps you navigate the world of the "sorta" kosher, the "kinda" kosher and the "kosher, but..." in One Man's Kosher is Another Man's Treif.


Shabbat

 

A Jewish grandma explains Shabbat to her non-Jewish grandchildren, in Janet Silver Ghent's Can a Jewish Bubbe Help a New Generation Keep the Faith?


Thanksgiving

A "judio perdido" ("lost Jew") returns home, remembering the lingering Latin Turkey Day dinners from her youth, in My Father, the Vacuum, and a Wedge of Tembleque for Thanksgiving, by Teresita Levy.

Karyn Cook Zafran wonders how you say thanks in an interfaith family without dropping the "J.C. bomb" or speaking unintelligble Hebrew, in Counting Our Blessings at Thanksgiving.


News and Opinion

In Adam Bronfman: The Inside Outsider, the intermarried son of one of the Jewish community's most philanthropic families makes outreach his goal.


Arts and Entertainment

Santa (Paul Giamatti) and Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) are raising Jewish children, while Margot at the Wedding is chock-full of Jews, half-Jews and non-Jews married to Jews. Read more in the latest installment of Nate Bloom's Interfaith Celebrities.


What's New at IFF

Congratulations to Becky Voorwinde, the winner of the drawing for the $500 American Express giftcard following our December Holidays Survey!


Opportunities  

Our friends at the Bronfman Youth Fellowships in Israel are looking for Jewish teenagers from diverse backgrounds enterting 12th grade for a fantastic five-week, all-expenses-paid education and travel program in Israel in the summer of 2008. They encourage all eligible students to apply.

And our own Rabbi Lev Baesh will be leading an independent interfaith journey to Israel with Rev. Dr. Mary E. Westfall April 7-17, 2008.

Have a great Hanukkah,

Micah Sachs, Managing Editor

Write for Us!

We're looking for writers on the following topics:

  • Your interfaith love story for Valentine's Day
  • Interfaith families and New Year's
  • Parenting young children
  • Weddings

Interested in any of these topics? Contact us at editor@interfaithfamily.com.

 

InterfaithFamily.com | P.O. Box 428, Newton, MA 02464 | 617 581 6860 | network@interfaithfamily.com

Hanukkah (known by many spellings) is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt of the 2nd Century BCE. It is marked by the lighting of a menorah and the eating of fried foods. A member of the Jewish clergy who leads a congregation in songful prayer. ("Hazzan" in Hebrew.) A language of West Semitic origins, culturally considered to be the language of the Jewish people. Ancient or Classical Hebrew is the language of Jewish prayer or study. Modern Hebrew was developed in the late-19th and early 20th centuries as a revival language; today it is spoken by most Israelis.
Hebrew for "fit" (as in, "fit for consumption"), the Jewish dietary laws. Hebrew for "my master," the term refers to a spiritual leader and teacher of Torah. Often, but not always, a rabbi is the leader of a synagogue congregation.
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