Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sunday Faith Blog

"The festival of lights commemorates the Jewish people’s perseverance over oppression and their indefatigable pursuit of the sacred right to worship freely.
As the Jewish people remember their ancestors, join them in honoring this proud legacy of religious freedom.
Hanukkah offers all of us a chance to give thanks for the blessings of liberty and to honor America’s Jewish community, whose contributions to our culture and society have made us a stronger nation.
May the burning candles inspire us to be a more compassionate society and serve as a symbol of hope to all those around the world without the freedom to worship freely and openly.
Happy Hannukah to our Jewish community!........
may the candle always burn brightly.
There's a Christmas Nativit
y Scene which (believe it or not) Santa Monica still accomodates for on Ocean Park Avenue. The city has 14 wooden stalls and that many churches take one aspect of Christ's birth and illustrate it (shepherds, magi, King Herod, etc..) in their stall. Atheists have been fighting it for years but it's still there! A very well known and successful Jewish insurance entrepreneur saved this Christian display a few years back by pumping tons of money into its upkeep. It's good that we all honor and maintain the two most contributing faiths to this country. Amen.
(The words about Hannukah were sent to me by commenter Impertinent, who had them sent to him...thanks, Imp)
z

25 comments:

heidianne jackson said...

it is, indeed, a celebration of the right to worship as we see fit. i am certain that this lesson was not lost on our founding fathers - after all, the pilgrims came to this land seeking the very same right.

it was a bittersweet moment as i lit the first candle for this festival with none of my children and mr. j - all being out of town. i thought it would be somehow less because i was alone - but it wasn't.

the import of the victory, the sheer beauty of the power of god in keeping the lights burning, the peacefulness of being able to worship in accordance with my beliefs - all of it - was perhaps more present then with all the kids and other family members.

thank you for posting this, z - and impertinent - it's a wonderful reminder for all of us.

the malcontent said...

Amen my sister. Keep the faith.

Chuck said...

Happy Hannukah to our Jewish friends.

Great story about Santa Monica Z

Always On Watch said...

May the burning candles inspire us to be a more compassionate society and serve as a symbol of hope to all those around the world without the freedom to worship freely and openly.

I fear that, within my lifetime, I'll see this most important freedom abrogated via all the pc nonsense.

Glad to know that Santa Monica still has such a display of the Nativity.

Here in Northern Virginia, one of our local towns quit allowing the Nativity scene on the town's common ground years ago. But a Christian doctor's office is right next door, so the Nativity scene is still with us.

I also note that some are truly threatened by the display of the Birth or the Christ Child. Threatened by the Truth, is that what it is?

Z said...

heidianne...one can look at the light burning as the continued existence of Israel and I SURE do hope THAT light keeps bright.

Thanks, Malcontent, you too.

Chuck, it's pretty amazing considering HOW secular this area is and that MANY people call Santa MOnica "The People's Republic of Santa Monica" (this town demands profitable companies who want to build commercial buildings in the area also build and PAY FOR low income housing..typical fascist behavior...tho I MUST admit the city's pretty well run on the whole)

Always...it's a mystery, isn't it? There were atheists for years in this country; WHY NOW this amazing attack on nativity scenes and anything Christian (or even DEIST)? what ARE they afraid of? if more than 80% of Americans id as Christian (nominal or not, and only God knows the hearts), then how in the world can any secularist get his way? ONLY THROUGH PC..."Gee, it'll hurt one person's feelings".

We need to GROW UP and toughen ourselves up again....ignore what bugs you. Nobody's EVER disputed the large Menorah in a Beverly Hills park on the main drag through that city... No Jews I KNOW have disputed nativity scenes (until lately, I have heard rabbis here suddenly upset but I think they're a minority)

If we let go this amazing thing that our founders depended on; if we continue to threaten America's beautiful customs, we're in trouble.

Funny, last night I was watching the original FATHER OF THE BRIDE....there was such goodness and decency; kids paid attention to their folks, the wedding was so traditional, the customs of the times (1950) were so decent...and I left it for a moment to channel surf and a ROSEANNE rerun was in my remote memory and the suddenness of SUCH a difference in culture hit me like a wet mackerel across my face! I thought "What was THAT?" and realized the kind of 'shock' to my system was the amazing juxtaposition of beauty and genteel vs ....ROSEANNE and all that is (funny as hell, I must admit, most of the time, but MAN, talk about lowering bars in society reflecting people with values I personally hope to NEVER meet, you know? DID it 'reflect' or was it the writers' very hopeful attempt at lowering the bar of what mores and traditional values exist still in so many homes? More of that constant push in the far left direction that's couched in humor but I BELIEVE can be so hurtful to society as it subliminally accepts that kind of thing before it realizes what it did, you know?)
It was QUITE a shock....and America IS largely ROSEANNE these days and we need to sit up and accept and try to change that......in my humble opinion.

Z said...

By the way...I recognize that MY values aren't American's values and I TOTALLY respect that.
I just think more people are FATHER OF THE BRIDE types and that the new writers in Hollywood are pushing us purposefully and almost subconsciously away from that and THAT's what bugs me.

Brooke said...

I hope all those who intend to celebrate Hanukkah have a blessed one. :)

Jen said...
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Jen said...

Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish friends and blogging buddies!

Khaki Elephant said...

Amen. Happy Hanukkah. May God bless and protect you.

Faith said...
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Bloviating Zeppelin said...

And isn't it odd that, apparently, many US Jews don't seem to have much concern or thought for their fellow Jews in Israel? I have always wondered about that. Does the ocean happen to make that much difference?

BZ

David Wyatt said...

Amazing how God preserves His ancient people. Happy Hanukkah to our Jewish friends. God continues to do so, even in our day. The story of Stalin's death in 1953 near Purim is an often forgotten account of God's working behind the scenes! He WILL set His King on His Holy Hill Zion as He promises in Psalm 2!

Anonymous said...

But those SATANISTS and their PENTAGRAMS -- and the Voodoo Dolls stuck full of pins --and the slitting of the throats of lambs and goats on stone altars, -- the ritual worship of rattlesnakes -- the stoning of adulterers in public sqaures -- the burning of live widows on their husband's funeral pyre --these are all "religious expressions" too.

In this Age of unbridled Ecumenism -- and subsequent LOSS of Christian Identity -- ANYTHING GOES in the Public Square -- or NOTHING goes but sterile insipid secular expressions of "Holiday Cheer."

This is STILL a predominantly CHRISTIAN nation -- OVERWHELMINGLY so -- given the many and varied definitions of "Christianity" practiced today.

The customs of distinct non-Christian MINORITIES should not be given EQUAL BILLING near the parks, public monuments, office building and courthouses.

We are a CHRISTIAN NATION -- not an amorphous polyglot boarding house filled with lost souls who have no particular identity.

CHRISTMAS is the HEART and SOUL of who and what we are. Don't let's muck it up with symbols that have no relevance to the Birth of Our Lord and Savior --- a UNIQUE Event in all human history.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

~ FreeThinke

psi bond said...

The proof in the immortality of the soul is that myriads have believed it; they also believed the world was flat.
-- Mark Twain

Although a perhaps overwhelming number of Christians believe America is a Christian nation, it is not. It is a richly diverse nation full of "lost" souls seeking their personal salvation in their own particular ways. No one has to believe in the divinity of Jesus to be recognized as a bona fide American. In fact, Thomas Jefferson, no less, did not so believe. In law, if not always in practice, the U.S. government may not show favor to sects of Christianity, albeit the religion of the majority. Advocates of separation of church and state rightly assert that it is not the role of government to display, under its auspices, religious symbols, whether they are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, or whatever. America has many serious problems challenging it. A bitter domestic squabble over the religious nature or Christian purity of the public square should not be one of them.

Happy holidays!

Faith said...
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Z said...

FT...as you know, Judaism is the root of CHristianity..the faith this country's tenets have been based on and adhered to until about 50 years or so ago (by the way, see a correlation with how the hell our country's going since the purge for secularism?)

Are you suggesting a Menorah in a town square's wrong? I know the secularists will be itching for some big brass teapot from islam or something (they don't allow representations of humans, etc. and the Saudi cities are littered with HUGE coffee urns as sculptures), but that would be just plain stupid considering the small amount of muslims in America.

of course, if the PC kicks up, that'll change and the Left will be largely happy to be rid of the really decent, good tenets they didn't realize would GO when islam kicked up, until they realize they're what kept them alive and free... but that's another topic and they never understand anyway. Odd.

psi bond said...

Christians have burnt each other, quite persuaded
That all the Apostles would have done as they did.

-- Lord Byron

Secularization has been continuing since the adoption of the Constitution, the founding document of the U.S. that dethroned traditional theocratic notions of God and empowered the people. The facile assumption that a demonstrable cause-and-effect relation exists between the secularization of everyday life and "how the hell our country's going" is typical of the extreme right that mistrusts science. As is the hysterical assumption that separation of state and church will culminate in "good tenets" (a stealthy euphemism for Christian tenets, Z?) vanishing and Islam "kicking up". (Preacherly fear-mongering’s “kicking in”.)

Which is certainly not to say that the majority is not entitled to believe such reassuring myths and berate, for not getting it, folks who differ with them.

Diversity is typical of the beliefs Americans hold. That inclusivity has always been an integral part of the American identity. Thankfully.

psi bond said...

Z: FT...as you know, Judaism is the root of CHristianity..the faith this country's tenets have been based on and adhered to until about 50 years or so ago

Unfortunately, many Christians need to be told that Christianity is not the perfected expansion of Judaism.

As you all know, at the root of Christianity is the idea that Jesus is God’s son. All adherents of Judaism, as well as many other good Americans, reject this principle as dubious according to their personal beliefs and as illegitimate in lawmaking.

psi bond said...

Fauxthinker: CHRISTMAS is the HEART and SOUL of who and what we are. Don't let's muck it up with symbols that have no relevance to the Birth of Our Lord and Savior --- a UNIQUE Event in all human history.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

__________________________________

Boca pastor says library display has menorah, needs Nativity

By Marc Freeman, Sun Sentinel

December 14, 2009

Boca Raton, Florida

A lighted Christmas tree, a tabletop electric Hanukkah menorah, and miniature Santa Claus and snowman figures are part of the downtown library's holiday decorations.

Local Christian activists on Monday announced they want more — a crèche depicting the birth of Jesus Christ.

The Rev. Mark D. Boykin, senior pastor of Church of All Nations, said he wants city officials to allow the placement of a Nativity scene near the menorah to show "religious equality."

"During these festive times, we as Christians must be included in the celebrations," Boykin said.

The evangelical church leader said he will bring a number of congregants to the library on Thursday afternoon in an attempt to donate the portable religious display, which measures about 2 feet wide and 6 inches high.

City Manager Leif Ahnell could not be reached for comment despite a call and e-mail to his office Monday. The office of Catherine O'Connell, library services manager, referred media inquiries to Ahnell's office.

....

Pastor Boykin says the library's Christmas tree does not demonstrate inclusion of the Christian faith.

"To us, that's what a snowflake would be to a menorah," he said. "That has nothing to do with Christ and religious expression at all."

Anticipating resistance from the city, Boykin says his group will not be deterred.

"We'll fight them as far as this needs to go," he said.

Anonymous said...

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do."

The dominant culture in any society should set the tone.

This does not mean minorities should be scorned, insulted or persecuted, but the dominant culture has the right to -- dominate.

It was always that way, and we had no problems with it till professional troublemakers schemed and plotted to sue the majority into submission to a Tyranny of the Minorities, which is essentially what we have today.

~ FereeThinke

Faith said...

I agree, FT, even about Jewish holidays, although Hanukkah is a holiday a Christian can't object to. It's about God's intervening on behalf of those who serve Him, in that case miraculously, really a great story. But you're right, this WAS a Christian country from the beginning despite the naysayers and notwithstanding the deism of some of the founders, and Christian symbolism dominated everything -- and rightly so -- up until the last few decades. Christmas is about the birth of Christ, that's the whole reason for the season.

psi bond said...
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psi bond said...

America was not founded to be a Christian country, notwithstanding the insistent historical revisionism of the Christian right. The political power was given by the Constitution to the People. Some of them may pass that power to some personal god, while others choose to exercise it directly.

The reason for the season is peace to all who believe---including deists, atheists, and agnostics.

psi bond said...

"When in America, be yourself."

You are free to be who you want to be.

America is not the Roman Empire. It is fauxthinkiing, Fauxthinker (aka “FereeThinke”), that conflates freedom of belief with behavior in conformity with the overbearing culture of a domineering majority. The true spirit of Christianity is humility.

This does not mean minorities should be scorned, insulted or persecuted.

Or dismissed as impure elements “mucking it up”. TOLERANCE is the HEART and SOUL of the holiday season. Don't let's muck it up with exclusion of symbols that represent other religions practiced in this country --- religious tolerance being a UNIQUE contribution of America to human history.

Happy holidays!