This year Israel was celebrating Chanukah and Christmas back to back. Throughout the country Menorahs were being lit each night for eight nights and children played dreidel while the adults noshed on sufganiyot and latkes. It is common for the Menorah and candles to be placed outside the house. Glass boxes are used to protect the delicate flames from the weather
Israel is a very diverse country~her citizens come from all over the world. In no other place can you stand in a street or shopping center and hear hundreds of languages and dialects being spoken by people who hail from the Middle-East, to China, Russia, the Americas, Europe and even Lapland. The entire world is well represented in Israels' citizens.
|Birth Place of the Christ Child|
At the beginning of the week, David traveled to Bethlehem, to visit the Church of the Nativity. Two musicians from Italy were also in Bethlehem to serenade the coming of the birth of Christ. The grotto was cleared and the two musicians sang their song to the tune of Brahms Lullaby . At this time of year, it was a rare privilege to stand alone, in front of the silver star beneath the altar, in the Grotto of the Nativity. With the soulful sounds of the young woman from Italy filling the grotto, it was a beautiful, meaningful experience.
At the same time, just outside the Church of the Nativity, in Manger Square, there was a "Rock to Bethlehem Celebration" much to the joy of the young crowd. Meanwhile, in Mevasesret Zion, a group of youngsters from the Orot Ha Bama and Limelight dance studios performed in the Har El Mall. They entertained shoppers with Israeli dances, and of course something modern as well! The celebrations will carry on over the weekend throughout the country as our diverse citizenry is joined by millions of tourists from around the world.
From all of us at Jerusalem Vistas/Israel Vision, we wish you, our very dear friends, a most Blessed Christmas Season and a Healthy and Happy New Year!