A Chareidi (ultra-orthodox) family in Jerusalem, with their children dressed as Father Xmas (he who shall not be named).
Perhaps this is a mark of tolerance, mutual respect, a recognition that the Jewish people are, after all, a tiny minority, in a world of Xmas celebrators!
When I first came to Israel, one of the things that astounded me was the total absence of Christmas.
I was used to at least three months of incessant commercials and blah about the Christmas season.
I used to sing along with Christmas carols, settled down on the 25th to watch the Queen's speech, and then enjoy an old favourite movie on the TV.
In Israel, and certainly in religious neighborhoods, Christmas simply is absent.
As much as Purim may pass by unnoticed in Beijing, or Shavuot is absent in Tokyo.
So why is this chareidi family all decked out in Father Xmas gear?
1. It's probably a Purim photo.
2. They have no idea that these costumes are of Father Xmas.
3. Nor who Father Xmas is in any case.
In short, they are oblivious, and are dressed up as red robed rabbis.
Nominated for the President of Israel's Prize 2010.
Entrepreneur in the fields of charity and electro-optics. Established Lema'an Achai ("For My Brothers") the innovative community social services charity in Ramat Bet Shemesh, "Magen", the Bet Shemesh Child Protection Agency, and "Yad LeYedid" (A Hand to a Friend) charity helping impoverished families in Jerusalem. My day-job as Owner/CEO of Scitronix Ltd is marketing sophisticated electro-optical products to high tech industries in Israel.
I am the proud dad to six amazing kids, and luckiest-husband-in-the-world to Julie.
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