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The Festival of Lights

Jewish holiday Hanukkah concept with menorah, candles and dreidel on wooden table. Background for greeting card or banner
Maglara/Getty Images/iStockphoto

Today is the fourth day of Hanukkah, a Jewish holiday that most of my Christian friends don't understand.

Hanukkah is not Jewish Christmas. It is instead a festival of light remembering a time where Jews in the second century BC overcame an oppressive regime. So, the holiday is about religious freedom, but it also calls us to see the powerful symbolism light plays in our lives.

Both Jews and Christians, as well as other faith traditions, use light as a metaphor for God's presence in our lives. Our job is to purify our hearts so that God's light can shine in. The task of doing this requires more than our own willpower. It is something we do together in community.

So, I invite you to join me this Saturday at 6:00 PM at Crosstown Concourse, as Temple Israel host a community wide Hanukkah concert and celebration that will be broadcast nationally. With the Omicron variant looming, we all need a way to embrace god's abundant, loving kindness in the midst of uncertainty. I hope to see you Saturday. This is Dr. Scott Morris for Church Health.

Dr. G. Scott Morris, M.D., M.Div, is founder and CEO of Church Health, which opened in 1987 to provide quality, affordable health care for working, uninsured or underserved people and their families. In FY2021, Church Health had over 61,300 patient visits. Dr. Morris has an undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia, a Master of Divinity degree from Yale University, and M.D. from Emory University. He is a board-certified family practice physician and an ordained United Methodist minister.