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electronic newsletter 12-23-08

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Ways You Can Get Involved

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Connections In Your Area--Featured Events

Camping with Your Grandma!

Dec. 27, 10 a.m.

Grandparents and grandchildren can have a great Shabbat retreat together at Camp L'Dor Vador at Temple Micah in Denver.



December 23, 2008

Dear Friend,

From all of us to all of you, we wish you a happy everything. This December, Hanukkah overlaps with Christmas, and for the first time in years, the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Hadha also fell in December.  The next time we see you it will be 2009!

As the year ends, we want to thank everyone who has made a donation to If you haven't yet and are in a position to, we need you now more than ever--one of our major foundation supporters announced last Friday that it is closing because of the Madoff scandal. If we've helped you or anyone you care about, please click the donate buton and help us. Thank you!

December Delights and Dilemmas

Our newsletter of December 9 had most of our stories about people in interfaith families choosing to celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas or both. It included my new Guide to Hanukkah for Interfaith Families, in case you need a few pointers on the history of Hanukkah or how to play dreidel. You might also enjoy Micah Sachs' blog post, How Do You Spell That Jewish Holiday in December?

If you are still feeling a little iffy about your choices around parenting and the December holidays, listen to Rabbi Reuben's Ruminations: The December Dilemma, produced in partnership with the Jewish TV Network. He'll help you chill out without having to go outside in the snow!



New Wedding Bloggers

We're excited to have a new couple blogging on our Weddings Blog. Meet Alx Block and Lula Jones. We hope you'll enjoy following their planning process as they get ready for their interfaith wedding. (This beautiful ketubah with Japanese themes is not theirs--it's just nifty.)

New Facebook Page

If you have a Facebook account, we'd be thrilled if you followed our new IFF fan page. It updates with our daily featured article and blog posts.

Arts and Entertainment

President Bush kissing Barbra Streisand on the cheek? Nate Bloom thinks it's a Hanukkah miracle! Read his Interfaith Celebrities: Tributes at the Kennedy Center. (That's Streisand with fellow Kennedy Center honoree Morgan Freeman in the photo.)

New On the Blogs

The staff at continues to blog up a storm. Micah Sachs wrote on A Sad Day for Outreach in the wake of the Madoff financial scandal. Robin Schwartz reported on New leadership and refreshing attitudes! at a conference for building young Jewish leadership, and Rabbi Lev Baesh commented on Art Imitating Life or Beating us to the Punch!





With all of our best wishes for a happy new year,


Ruth Abrams, Managing Editor

Write for Us!

We're looking for writers on the following topics:

  • I'm Christian and my grandchildren are Jewish
  • Young adult children of interfaith families living in Chicago
  • The role of art and music in raising a Jewish child
  • Parenting in an interfaith family in Atlanta
  • My parents wanted me to be Jewish, and now they're complaining it's too much
  • What it means to be a Jewish dad | P.O. Box 428, Newton, MA 02464 | 617 581 6860 | | P.O. Box 428, Newton, MA 02464 | 617 581 6860 |

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. The Jewish Sabbath, from sunset on Friday to nightfall on Saturday. A member of the Jewish clergy who leads a congregation in songful prayer. ("Hazzan" in Hebrew.) 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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