I have a problem with Christmas, but it’s not one of the ‘usual ones’ – contesting
the perceived rights and wrongs about celebrating Jesus’ birth on this or that date, or scrutinising the pagan origins of a lot of the ‘Christmas stuff’.
My issue with chag hamolad (Holiday of the Birth) has grown over my 30 December 25ths spent in Israel. Year after year, I have been increasingly aware of how there is basically no commemoration of this event in the land where the “Christmas story” took place.
Christian Arabs do celebrate, of course; Bethlehem and Nazareth – towns that are historically Christian (even though they no longer are) – do deck their halls, and churches do hold Midnight Mass and Christmas morning services. I know this.
But for the overwhelming majority of Israeli citizens, it’s a non-event. This year, the 25th happens to fall on...
Become a Member
Read all member content
Get exclusive in-depth reports from Israel.
Get exclusive in-depth reports from Israel
Connect with Israel, right from your home.
Lift up the voice of truth and hope
Support Jerusalem-based Zionist journalism.
Already a member? Login here.