A controversial art exhibit depicting McDonald’s iconic clown on a cross led to a maelstrom of conflict in the multi-ethnic city of Haifa.
Last week, the Israel Bureau of Statistics published the 2018 figures on Christians living in Israel. According to the report, approximately 175,000 Christians currently live in the Holy Land making up two percent of the total population. Of those, 77.7 percent are Arab Christians. This represents a 2.2 percent growth in Israel’s Christian population in the past year.
In a recent article, Ben Caspit, a senior journalist for Al-Monitor, cited a “very high-placed political source in Jerusalem,” who stated on the condition of anonymity that Trump’s much-awaited Middle East peace plan required dividing Jerusalem into three sections. One section will be a Palestinian capital in significant sections of East Jerusalem.”
Rabbi Yosef Berger, the rabbi of King David’s Tomb on Mount Zion, informed Breaking Israel News of a truly disturbing situation. Rabbi Berger claims that the Catholic Church constructed a tunnel underneath King David’s Tomb, ignoring the Jewish religious claim to the site and endangering artifacts and catacombs dating back to Biblical times.
For the first time in 2000 years, non-Jews around the world are expressing a desire to connect with Torah, the Land of Israel, the God of Israel and the Jewish people. Author Dr. Rivkah Lambert Adler in her book “Ten From The Nations: Torah Awakening Among Non-Jews” pioneers a look inside this phenomenon of a Torah awakening among current and former Christians.
A few years ago, I went out on a limb and wrote an article in favor of Christmas. At the time, it was a big deal. Very few rabbis had gone on the record on behalf of the holiday that epitomized Christianity. I wrote a column in 2014, “Je-Wish You a Merry Christmas” encouraging my fellow Jews to wish their Christian friends a Merry Christmas, a phrase that was often taboo in Jewish circles.
As Christmas approaches in Bethlehem each year, fewer and fewer Christian residents take part – not because the tree in Bethlehem’s Manger Square is any less grand than the year before or because less money is allocated towards the festivities – quite the opposite, actually. While the Bethlehem Municipality has invested in marvelous concerts, carols, processions, a midnight mass, tourism and restored pillars in the Church of the Nativity, the fact remains that the Christian population is decreasing each year in the city where Christians believe Jesus was born.
As Christmas approaches, stars, one of the symbols of the Christian holiday, appear. What few people realize is that the star, symbolizing an astronomical appearance described in the New Testament, may have its sources in Jewish eschatological literature – i.e. that describing the Messiah’s arrival.