Dear Friends –
Chanukah is just around the corner, and, as it falls so close to Christmas this year, we cannot help but be drawn into the festive allure of the holiday season. The lights, the music and the endless parties are all there for us to enjoy, but we must also stay focused on the timeless historical and spiritual lessons imbedded in our ancient festival.
Historically, our celebration elevates the importance of the military victory of the Maccabees in 165 BCE. In remembering this aspect of our holiday, we consider the value in fighting for religious freedom in every age for all peoples.
Spiritually, our celebration is understood to be a celebration of miracles. In lighting our festival lights and eating foods fried in oil, we recall the miraculous events that graced the Maccabees in their day with the hope that God will bless us with such miracles in our own day.
At HCRJ, our observances during this season will try to embrace each of these powerful themes. Some of our programming will focus on Chanukah. Others will take place in connection to Christmas. All will strive to add value and meaning to this season of joy.
Please consider participating in the programs below as we glorify the miraculous and pursue justice, peace and liberty in the world around us:
Programming for Chanukah and Beyond
Hold’em Chanukah: Email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP. Reservations are due today.
Join us for our First Annual Hold’em Chanukah on Sunday, December 14 at 6:00.
Please send us your favorite Chanukah related recipes. We are putting together a collection of holiday favorites on our website. Main dishes, side dishes desserts and more are all welcome. Submissions need to be received by Saturday December 13.
Send your recipe to Beckye Gross at email@example.com.
Our congregational celebration of Chanukah will take place at Shabbat services on Friday night December 19 at 7:15. Special music, readings, songs and additional instruments will be used to add to the joy of our holiday celebration.
At our Chanukah oneg, we will enjoy platefuls of hot crispy potato pancakes and other Chanukah delights
Sunday School Chanukah Program:
Our Sunday school program on Sunday, December 14 will include an interactive Chanukah experience for all of our students.
A Muslim / Jewish Christmas: Wednesday, December 24, 3:00 – 5:30
At the River Oaks Islamic Center
3110 Eastside St, Houston, TX 77098
Join us for the Fifth Annual Jewish/Muslim Christamas as we gather to watch the short PBS movie entitled, Enemy of the Reich: The Noor Inayat Khan Story. This movie is a moving account of a young Muslim woman who sacrificed her life to combat the brutal domination of Nazi Germany. In a world where tensions between Judaism and Islam can be highly strained, this movie challenges all of us to stand up for what is right and just. Please Dress Modestly
Xmas Mitzvah Opportunity: Christmas Morning 10:45 am – 12:00
It has become an HCRJ tradition to serve a Christmas lunch and sing Christmas songs to the residents of the Turning Point Center shelter on Christmas Day. Join us as we bring joy through song and compassion to a group that needs our love. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 713-782-4162.