Christmas may not be our holiday, but American Jews have always found ways to share in the joy of the season. As a child, I delighted in the fact that I could join my friend Brian Galloway (Irish Catholic) early in the morning to open his gifts under the tree and then zip over to the home of Chris Nico (Italian Catholic) to open gifts with his family in the afternoon. Of course, Christmas Eve was reserved for Chinese food and a movie – a longstanding holiday tradition for most American Jews.
Many of us had similar experiences growing up, and as adults our Christmas traditions continue. Some of us have family members who are not Jewish, and we embrace the opportunity to share this sacred day with them. Others may choose to spend the day bringing joy and love to the world by doing a special mitzvah.
Whatever the case may be, Christmas in America has become part of the fabric of our society regardless of our faith. So, in that spirit, I wish everyone in our congregation a day filled with love of family and friends and caring for the world in around us.