🕎 Amid Israel-Hamas War, Hanukkah 2023 Mixes Fears With Festivities 🔌


Meanwhile, the presidents of three elite American universities are facing a backlash “over their refusal to say whether calling for the genocide of Jews violates their policies against bullying and harassment,” as USA Today’s Michael Collins explains.

The backlash at Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Pennsylvania includes “threats from donors, demands that their presidents resign and a congressional investigation,” the New York Times’ Alan Blinder, Anemona Hartocollis and Stephanie Saul point out.

This is our weekly roundup of the top headlines and best reads in the world of faith. We start with the concerns that the Israel-Hamas war has brought to Hanukkah.

What To Know: The Big Story

The war and Hanukkah: The eight-day holiday commenced at sundown Thursday, prompting veteran religion writer Cathy Lynn Grossman to ask here at ReligionUnplugged.com:

With Israel at war and antisemitism, particularly on college campuses, showing a sharp upswing across America, is this any time to put a menorah in the window — to “publicize the miracle” of Hanukkah by celebrating boldly, according to Jewish tradition?

Grossman — best known for her time as a national religion correspondent for USA Today and later Religion News Service — talks to Jews across the nation “about yearning to be simultaneously joyful and careful, to be festive in fearful times.”

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