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  1. #1
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    Celebrating Hanukkah

    My daughter has been fascinated by Hanukkah, and in particular the lighting of the menorrah, since learning about it in preschool. Now that she's in kindergarten, she's getting ready to study it some more. I just love that she's being exposed to other cultures and religious diversity, and that it has sparked an interest.

    Would it be offensive to people of the Jewish faith if we (as Christians) lit a menorrah? What if we did so while studying the history of this event and praying for people of all faiths? I wouldn't want anyone to think that we were demeaning it in any way, as it seems that Hanukkah has maintained a sacred nature that Christmas is losing.

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  3. #2
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    I recommend reading "All of a Kind Family" by Sydney Taylor for stories about Jewish children growing up in turn-of-the-century New York. These books have truly memorable descriptions of holiday celebrations.

  4. #3
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    Re: Celebrating Hanukkah

    i wouldn't find it offensive at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by cackalackie
    ....it seems that Hanukkah has maintained a sacred nature that Christmas is losing.
    a little better than the materialism of christmas, with no light up plastic santas, but its become sort of christmasized because it occurs at around the same time as christmas...with a "chanukah frog" or a "chanukah bush" or my friends telling me in elementary school, "oh, you're so lucky, chanukah is eight days. so you get presents every day, right?" not really, i usually just get a little bit of money from my parents and a small gift sometimes.

    but it is a beautiful holiday. light the menorah, but don't forget to play dreidel and eat fatty fried foods:-)

  5. #4
    ti
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    i think it is wonderful that you are so willing to celebrate something so that your daughter can "drink in" the richness of the holiday.

  6. #5
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    Thanks, y'all. I was just thinking about the fact that I think I was in junior high before I even met a Jewish person. And although it's much more open a society now - even in the South - all sorts of subtle bias still exist. I am determined that both my daughters will grow up open-minded and well-rounded.

  7. #6
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    sounds wonderful!

    maybe ask a jewish friend to come over and have shabbat dinner with you - the lighting candles and blessing.

  8. #7
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    I don't think it would be offensive to light a menorah with your daughter. You could make latkes, too. And play dreidel. Hanukkah is great holiday to celebrate with kids.

    Hanukkah actually isn't all that religious of a holiday, not like Yom Kippur or Rosh Hashanah. I think people only think of it as a major holiday because it falls so close to Christmas and there are gifts involved.

    And sarikat, I loved the All-of-a-Kind Family books. I still have the whole set at my mom's house, I re-read them when I was home for a bit last year.

  9. #8
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    All of a Kind Family! I loved those books. :)
    cackalackie, I think it's a lovely idea. I hope you both enjoy the celebration.

  10. #9
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    whoops, double post

  11. #10
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    Your daughter is so lucky to have a mother who is open to learning about and celebrating holidays from different cultures!

    For next year, if it's the lights she really likes, you can learn about the Hindu festival/holiday called Diwali - it's also about lights. But it was back in mid-November.

    But as was earlier mentioned, Hanukkah is really not so religious, and anyway, Jesus used to celebrate it too! I love the idea of trying to find a Shabbat dinner, they're really fascinating and yummy! Passover can be fun too when you get to hunt for the hidden matzoh, or so I've heard from my atheist Jewish friend :)


 
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