Skip to comments.Denver Mayor to Light Community Menorah (He's the "Merry Christmas" censor)
Posted on 12/02/2004 8:06:57 AM PST by churchillbuff
The Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado has announced that Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper will once again light the community Menorah on the first night of Chanukah. The public is invited to join in the annual community lighting ceremony on Tuesday, December 7 beginning at 5:30 pm.
I look forward to joining the Denver Jewish community in lighting the community Menorah again this year, said Mayor John Hickenlooper, who will make his second consecutive appearance at the Federations ceremony. Chanukah brings communities across Colorado and the world together in celebration of light, freedom and peace.
The community Menorah is located at 300 S. Dahlia Street, corner of East Alameda and South Dahlia Street in Denver, next to the Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado building.
We are honored that Mayor Hickenlooper will once again be taking part in our community Menorah lighting ceremony, stated Doug Seserman, President and CEO of Federation. The Mayors presence represents Denvers support and observance of this important Jewish holiday and we appreciate his participation, Seserman continued.
Lighting ceremonies will continue nightly through Chanukah beginning with the Mayor lighting on December 7 and ending on December 14. The lighting schedule for December 8-14 is still tentative, but Federation anticipates that various local Jewish agencies will host the lighting each night.
CO: Christmas in Colorado; All Hell Breaking Out. by Blogicus Maximus
Its Christmas time in the mile high city and all hell is breaking loose.
Things began to unravel last week when Denver Mayor Hickenlooper, a Democrat, decided to ban the words "Merry Christmas" from the city and county building in downtown Denver. "Merry Christmas," due to its offensive nature, will be replaced with "Happy Holidays."
This seemed like a surprising misstep for the mayor who had been riding high after some major victories during the election, his party managed to win both houses of the state legislature for the first time since Kennedy beat Nixon. He also favored a massive expansion of both light and heavy rail, dubbed FasTracks, which won a surprisingly strong victory. He also won approval for a new citizen review board that will assist in the oversight of the police force. After all these recent victories it seemed strange the Mayor Hickenlooper would spend his political capital by removing the "Merry Christmas" over the city and county building, especially when a giant nativity scene is still sitting on the building's steps.
Now comes the news that the non-profit group that runs the Parade of Lights, a Christmas, or should we say Holiday Parade, that is celebrating its thirtieth birthday this year, has banned a local Christian Church from participating in the event.
As this story begins to get national attention, it rapidly is evolving into a major public relations fiasco for Denver and Colorado. Many new questions have been raised, such as why keep the nativity scene? If "Merry Christmas" could offend someone, then surely a nativity scene on public property could send a non-christian into a panic. Why ban a Christian Church's parade float? If the Christian themed float, with its Merry Christmas message and Christmas carols cannot participate because of its "religious theme" then one must ask why the "Two Sprit Society's" float, which honors homosexual American Indians as "holy people," or the float with the lion dance, which is a tradition of the Chinese New Year?
Overall, this rapidly expanding story seems to be a no-win situation for Denver and its once seemingly unstoppable mayor, who now is being called "Scroogenlooper" among some circles.
Notice that he doesn't refer to Chanukah in a religious way either, but rather a "celebration of light, freedom and peace". Nice secular little holiday for shopping, just like Christm...I mean, Winter Holiday.
No christain persecution here folks, so just smile and move along. END SARCASM!!
It seems the problem is that they are trying to dis-associate the month of December as the month we celebrate the Birth of Jesus Christ, the fact is that Chanukah and the Birth of Jesus didn't happen this month but we both honor these 2 holidays this month.
Chanukah is Dec 7th a historical and important event for the Jewish people, however CHRISTMAS IMHO is for EVERYONE a time that people might be a bit kinder, friendlier, humble and might look up to the sky with gratitude to Almighty GOD that he loved us human beings so much that he gave us his Son to pay the penalty of sinful people so that WE ALL have an opportunity to live with him for eternity.
This world is one big Train Station we are waiting for that train to take us to our final destination and hopefully we all board the one where Jesus Christ is the conductor..
Hsppy Chanukah to all our Jewish freeper friends!
Homosexual Indians are holy people??? Bwahahahahaa did someone spell that wrong? should it be holey people and in brown holey? Good gooogamooga the worlds gone nuts.
I wouldnt call Homosexual Indians holy people I would call them queers, why get racial? One name fits them all.
...next to the Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado building.
Note that this is not city-owned or -operated property.
Nobody here in Merrimack is complaining about the creche on the lawn of the local Catholic church, the key aspect being that it is on the lawn of the church, not the town hall.
I think the mayors an idiot and wouldn't invite him myself, but your suggestion that as retaliation Jews shouldn't be allowed light a Menorah at a Jewish Community Center is equally idiotic.
Hickenlooper is finally showing his true colors. He kinda ran as a conservative (ie: he was going to slim down the city gov't, make parking meters free on certain days for downtown shopping, etc). Since that time, he has endorsed Kerry for pres and banned any tiny reference to Christianity.
I'm moving. I miss the suburbs.
Read a little closer, friend. I never said they shouldn't have the menorah, I said I wasn't bothering to shop in Denver now.
I normally would think that lighting the menorah is a nice thing but not now. Why do the Jews get to call it Hanukkah but the Christians can't call it Christmas?
Guess that wasn't you. No, the poster didn't say they shouldn't light it, just that it wasn't a nice thing.
I thought it was Boulder that had the famous historic Christmas Parades?
...........but,.....maybe,...The Boulder anti-christians have taken control of Denver too?
Latinos should flood his office with letters in Spanish and emotional calls to his office, in Spanish or even broken English, 'to restore the great Hispanic holiday (also loved by millions of others worldwide) of "Navidad (Nativity)" or "Christmas" to official Denver. To not do so is a hate crime, insulting the largest group of new immigrants to Colorado, for whom this is a central holiday', etc. etc.
Sorry...had to do it.
F***ing hypocrisy alert!!!
It's not a nice thing that an elected offical appears to endorse one example of traditional religious expression while rejecting another traditional religious expression which has also entered secular life.
Not a nice thing at all. For any of us.
No, but he's a government official acknowledging and participating in (in his official capacity as mayor) in a religious ceremony. I have no problem with that. What I have a problem with, is his then turnign around and saying that government can't acknowledge Christmas. It's a double standard, and it's anti-Christian bigotry.
Actually Chanukah DID happen on the date the Jewish calendar claims it did. The Eight day Chanukah festival begins on the twenty-fifth of the Jewish month of Kislev, every year. When that corresponds to the Gregorian calendar changes from year to year but it's celebrated on the correct date of the historical occurance.
Which is more than can be said for Christmas.
....the twenty-fifth of the Jewish month of Kislev, every year......that 25th is always Christmas!
(Support your local 'Manger' builders!)
Merry,....Merry Christmas,......is a 'sign'......a Manger Sign...!
Does he still ride that scooter?
I never knew Colorado was such a heathen state...
The Beauty of Colorado should give the people much to be grateful to GOD for....
Even though Christmas is celebrated on December 25 every year, no one really believes that Yeshua was born on December 25.
LOL! Haven't seen it lately.
................Yeshua was born on Kislev 25th.....which at times is on December 25th.....
......love that God given..........moving....Hebrew lunar calendar
Happy 'Jesus day' Chanukkah!
Actually, it seems to be more reasonable that Yeshua was conceived during Chanukkah but born during Sukkot.
I. The Conception of Yochanan (John the Baptist) / Luke 1:5-25
When the angel, Gavri-El (Gabriel), appeared to Zachar'yah (Zacharias) as he was ministering in the Temple, it was during the ministration of Abiyah (Abia). This order of priests ministered in the Temple the eighth week of the Hebrew year according to the ordinance of 1 Chronicles 24:10 (and according to the Talmud). The eighth week transverses the last week of the second Hebrew month of Iyar and the first week of the third Hebrew month of Sivan, which culminates at Shavuot (Pentecost). This is the anchor point for discovering the exact time of Messiah Yeshua's birth. The angel promised Zachar'yah that his prayer had been answered, and when he went home to his wife Elisheva (Elizabeth) she conceived, it seems almost immediately. This puts the conception of Yochanan (John the Baptist) very near the time of Shavuot, the Feast of Pentecost, in the second week of the month of Sivan, the third Hebrew month.
II. The Conception of Yeshua (Jesus) / Luke 1:26-55
Then, at the close of the sixth month of Elisheva' s pregnancy the angel Gavri-El appeared to Mara (Mary). Gavri-El told Mara about Elisheva, saying "she who was called barren is six months pregnant," This would be the last of the ninth Hebrew month called Kislev at the time of Chanukah. There are 27 weeks weeks between the end of discourse of Abiyah and the start of Chanukah (Dedication), which is celebrated eight days, from Kislev 25 to Tevet 2.
Mara accepts the word of the angel concerning the conception of Messiah in her, and she immediately rushes from Natseret (Nazareth) to the home of Elisheva and Zachar'yah in the Judean mountains close to Yerushalayim, about a three days journey from Natseret. Mara was probably going there to celebrate Chanukah and to help Elisheva with her pregnancy, as well as to talk to Elisheva about the angel's visitation.
Upon Mara's greeting to Elisheva, Elisheva responds to Mara, calling her "the mother of my L-RD". This demonstrates that Mara was already pregnant with Yeshua. Thus, Yeshua was conceived at Chanukah, the Festival of Lights, for He is the Light of the World.
Sometimes the time of Chanukah falls close to Christmas. The apostate Roman church of medieval times combined the pagan winter solstice in late December with the 25th of Kislev (Chanukah) to create Christmas (Christ's Mass) on Dec- ember 25. Supposedly, this was to celebrate Christ's birth.
Yeshua is shown celebrating Chanukah in John 10:22,23. It is at this celebration that He declares "I and My Father are One" [John 10:30], which testifies to His Divine origin in His conception. It also reinforces Chanukah as the time of His conception.
Historically, then, it is more accurate to celebrate Yeshua entering the world through conception at Chanukah rather than to celebrate His birth at Christmas. As we shall show, Christmas is not the birthday of Christ. (In fact, Christmas is an invention resulting from religious compromise with pagan tradition. Christmas only has harmony with the truth, in that it falls approximately at the time of year when Yeshua was conceived by the Holy Spirit.)
IlI.The Birth ofYochanan/Luke1:56-80
Mara stayed with Elisheva for three months, which was until the birth of Yochanan. Since a full pregnancy term is 41 weeks, and 27 weeks makes up the first six months (two trimesters), which is exactly the time from the discourse of Abiyah to Chanukah, that leaves 14 weeks to accomplish the last trimester and bring the pregnancy to full term. There are exactly 14 weeks from Chanukah to Passover (Nisan 14-22). Therefore, John the Baptist was born at Passover. He was circumcised on the eighth day, which would be the last day of Passover/Feast of Unleavened Bread. Gavri-EI had said that John would "go forth" in the strength and power of Elijah [Luke 1:17]. Jewish teaching was that Elijah would come again at Passover (this is still a tradition of Judaism today).
IV.The Birth of Yeshua/Luke 2
Nisan, when Yochanan was born, is the first month of the Hebrew year. As we have shown, Mara conceived six months after Elisheva conceived, which means Yeshua's birth would have to come six months after John's birth, during the seventh Hebrew month of Tishri. Since we know that John was born at Passover/Feast of Unleavened Bread, we learn the time of Yeshua's birth by counting six Hebrew months from Passover. The Feast of Unleavened Bread begins on Nisan 15 and six months later Tabernacles begins on Tishri 15. Therefore, Yeshua was born on the first day of Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles).
The first day of Tabernacles is a Sabbath rest, so it fits that Yosef and Mara planned their journey to Beit-Lechem (Bethlehem) so they would finish their journey before the festival Sabbath. They found lodging just in time.
Concerning the Feast of Tabernacles, the L-RD commanded that Israel should observe it eight days. They were to build temporary dwellings called a sukkah and dwell in them [Leviticus 23:34-43]. These sukkahs were erected to house families with some bare comforts and food for the eight days. Food was placed in a stall or a crib for storage in the tabernacle. The King James Bible calls this food crib a manger. Yeshua was not born in a barn, but rather in a temporary tabernacle which had been built for the celebration. He was placed in a "manger", demonstrating in a type that He is the Bread of Life from heaven.
The eighth day, Yeshua was circumcised according to the scriptural command [Luke 2:21]. For a male, this is what accomplishes a full Hebrew birth. The Feast of Tabernacles is for exactly eight days. The first and last days are both holy Sabbaths. Yeshua was born on the first day, a holy Sabbath, and circumcised on the eighth day, a holy Sabbath. Evidently, G-d intended this entire Feast of Tabernacles to be set aside in order to accomplish and celebrate Yeshua's birth into the world.
Note that G-d provided two holy feasts that lasted eight days, Passover/Unleavened Bread and the Feast of Tabernacles. John the Baptist, the forerunner of Messiah, was born and circumcised in the eight days of the first, then six month later Yeshua, the Messiah, was born and circumcised the eight days of the second. John came in the first month of the year and Yeshua came in the seventh month. In ministry, John introduced the way through Messiah and then Yeshua perfected it, even as the first and seventh months signify.
In my opinion, this chronology provides us with the exact day of Yeshua's birth, Tishri 15, according to the Hebrew calendar. The Hebrew calendar is kept updated to this modern day, and every year the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) is absolutely set from Tishri 15 to Tishri 22. Because the Hebrew calendar is based on the course of the Moon (Lunar) and the modern calendar is based on the course of the Sun (Solar), the two move in relation to each other. This means the Feast of Tabernacles will always occur somewhere between mid-September and mid-October, but not on the exact same Gregorian dates every year. For instance, in 1995 the Feast of Tabernacles was October 9-October 17, but in 1996 the Feast of Tabernacles was September 28-October 5. While this is initially confusing to the unlearned mind, a combination Gregorian/Hebraic calendar will easily clarify how the dates relate. Many local funeral homes provide free Hebrew calendars each year showing the modern dates for the holy Feast Days (ask for a Jewish calendar).
It may help you to understand the seeming movement of Yeshua's birthday by looking at your own birthday. Even though your birthday might keep the same number year after year, the day of the week it falls on changes. In like manner, Yeshua's birthday is on the same Hebraic calendar number each year, Tishri 15, but in relation to the Gregorian calendar it changes. However, you can plan for His birthday to always occur sometime between the latter part of September and the early part of October.
The Feast of Tabernacles is a most important comemoration. Zechariah 14:16,17 tells us that one day all nations will be required by law to honor this feast. For what greater reason, than it is the birthday of the King of Kings! Why should we delay?
Our hope and prayer is that the Ekklesia will return to the roots of her faith and learn to restore the fallen foundations. May we all work to overcome the influence of pagan customs in our celebrations and become separate from this world as a holy people before our holy G-d.
Copyright © 1994 by David M. Hargis and MBI. All rights reserved.
Grinch Award winner!
Just more Christmas bashing from the anti-Christmas mafia. Sad. Apparently, they are too stupid to see the irony of their own contradictions.
The lighting of the Menorah is a good thing
The Jewish Comunity is not the ones denying the words Merry Christmas ..
It's the Mayor that is doing that
How about calling the mayor to wish him a Merry Christmas?
John W. Hickenlooper
1437 Bannock Street
Denver, Colorado 80202
Phone: (720) 865-9000
Fax: (720) 865-8791
Oh that some one would hem him in with tons of reindeer manure.
If Christians in Denver take this censorship like sheep, then they only have themselves to blame for the setback for religious expression. They ought to do every single thing that the city has banned. They MUST drive a Manger float in the parade route, especially if they risk arrest. I dare the city of Denver to arrest those Chritstians and dismantle their Manger float on national TV. Please do. American fury will shock them and give us a new rallying cry for 2006/2008. We need to take a page from the left's protest and confrontation techniques. Unlike the left, most Americans support our beliefs and will rally to our side--IF WE WOULD ONLY FIGHT!
Vote with your wallets - and tell the local merchants why you won't be doing your Christmas shopping there...
No, you said Now I'm even madder than I was! I normally would think that lighting the menorah is a nice thing but not now. Why do the Jews get to call it Hanukkah but the Christians can't call it Christmas? This isn't "inclusive", it's divisive.
Id suggest you take your anger out at the mayor rather than the Jewish community. From other articles on this incident, I understand the Mayor has set up a crèche at Denver City Hall. If you dont let him know how you feel that will be gone next year too.
[www.uvm.edu/~classics/life/holiday.html] that seems to have inspired certain symbolic religious elements of Christmas. Mithraism arose in the Mediterranean world at the same time as Christianity, either imported from Iran, as Franz Cumont believed, or as a new religion which borrowed the name Mithras from the Persians, as the Congress of Mithraic Studies suggested in 1971.
Mithraism radiated from India where there is evidence of its practice from 1400 B.C. Mitra was part of the Hindu pantheon and Mithra was a minor Zooroastrian deity, the god of the airy light between heaven and earth. He was also a military general in Chinese mythology .
The soldiers' god, even in Rome (although the faith was embraced by male emperors, farmers, bureaucrats, merchants, and slaves, as well as soldiers), demanded a high standard of behavior, temperance, self-control, and compassion -- even in victory. Thus, Tertullian chides his fellow Christians for unbecoming behavior: Are you not ashamed, my fellow soldiers of Christ, that you will be condemned, not by Christ, but by some soldier of Mithras?
The comparison of Mithraists and Christians is not coincidental. December 25 was Mithras' birthday before it was Jesus'. The Online Mithraic Faith Newsletter [no longer available] says:
Since earliest history, the Sun has been celebrated with rituals by many cultures when it began it's journey into dominance after it's apparent weakness during winter. The origin of these rites, Mithrasists believe, is this proclamation at the dawn of human history by Mithras commanding His followers to observe such rites on that day to celebrate the birth of Mithras, the Invincible Sun.
But the actual choice of December 25 for Christmas was made under the Emperor Aurelian because this was the date of the Winter Solstice and was the day devotees of Mithras celebrated the dies natalis solis invicti (birthday of the invincible sun).
Mithraism, like Christianity, offers salvation to its adherents. Mithras was born into the world to save humanity from evil. Both figures ascended in human form, Mithras to wield the sun chariot, Christ to Heaven. The following summarizes the aspects of Mithraism that are also found in Christianity.
Mithras, the sun-god, was born of a virgin in a cave on December 25, and worshipped on Sunday, the day of the conquering sun. He was a savior-god who rivaled Jesus in popularity. He died and was resurrected in order to become a messenger god, an intermediary between man and the good god of light, and the leader of the forces of righteousness against the dark forces of the god evil.
- Pagan Origins of Christmas
An elected official attending and participating in an event sponsored by a community organization is not the same as the expendature of government money on proselytization for a particular religion.
May those who elected this maggot, become the rotting meat upon which he dines.
Hey myself, I just noticed how close the Mayor's name resembles; Mayor Chickenpooper.
"A central feature of the ceremonial associated with Mithras was the taurobolium, the ritual slaughter of a bull which commemorated and repeated Mithras' primeval act. The initiate was baptized in its blood, partaking of its life-giving properties."
I like the menorah ceremony. That is really nice. However, Merry Christmas is not offensive and should be displayed. When people wish me a Merry Christmas, I wish them one right back. It is not offensive to non-Christians, other than intolerant boobs!
I've already written a letter explaining why I won't be shopping in Denver this season. The Mayor is a former entrepreneur and he will respond to economics if he responds to anything.
The Mayor did not set up a creche. The creche has been a part of the annual display for decades. The issue has been taken to court more than once.
I wish the Mayor would light a Christmas tree AND a menorah. Heck, he could throw a match on a pagan bonfire and I wouldn't mind. But to endorse the one and dispatch the other is wrong.
You've got a point. But I really doubt that anyone has "met Jesus" while walking past the City & County building during December. Proselytizing is an active sort of business.
But if we say no public money for any religious-related display, we are going to be poorer as a culture. "Merry Christmas" is a Christian greeting to those of us who are but it's a traditional seasonal greeting to those of us who aren't.