Q:

Do Jews celebrate Christmas?

A:

Quick Answer

Jews do not celebrate Christmas, but instead celebrate Chanukah or Hanukkah. Also known as the Festival of Lights, Chanukah is an eight-day holiday celebrating the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

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Full Answer

The only religious observance associated with Chanukah is the lighting of candles, over which a prayer is recited. Nine candles are arranged in a menorah, and one candle is lit from right to left for each night of the holiday. Fried foods, such as potato latkes, are traditionally eaten at Chanukah because of the significance of oil to the holiday. At the rededication of the temple, very little oil was left to light the temple's menorah, which was supposed to burn throughout the night every night. Enough oil to burn for one day remained, yet miraculously, it burned for eight days.

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