Multi-cultural Holidays Celebration

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Hispanics will  join members of the Jewish, Christian, and African-American communities in participating in a unique joint celebration of the three major December holidays: Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa on Thursday, Dec. 15.
Lady’s Island resident Paula F. Puerto, a native of Colombia, South America, will discuss the challenges of celebrating Christmas in a multi-cultural, bilingual family as part of these week’s  “Holidays Celebration.”
The “Holidays Celebration” is believed to be the first event of its kind ever organized in Beaufort County. It’ll be held at the Beaufort Public Library, 311 Scott St., from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
The celebration, which will feature 15-minute presentations on each holiday that includes story-telling, music, decorations, and traditional holiday dishes, is free and open to the public. It’s being sponsored by the Northern Beaufort County Democratic Club.
The presenters will be:
• American Christmas: Rev. Kenneth Hodges, pastor of Beaufort’s historic Tabernacle Baptist Church and State Representative for S.C. House District 121.
• Latino Christmas: Paula F. Puerto, a retired Latin American banking manager for Chase Manhattan Bank, who now serves as the accountant for the small business IT consulting firm Wiske & Associates.
• Hanukkah: Cantor BenZion Bronshtein of Charleston, spiritual leader of Beaufort’s Beth Israel Synagogue, and a master musician who plays several instruments including the classical guitar, accordion, piano, violin, mandolin, and banjo.
• Kwanzaa: Theresa White, a freelance writer/editor and president of the Northern Beaufort County Democratic Club.
“Although the ‘Holidays Celebration’ is being sponsored by the Northern Beaufort Democratic Club, it doesn’t have anything to do with politics,” says White. “Rather, in keeping with the spirit of peace and good will universally expressed during the holiday season, this is a new opportunity to build a bridge to understanding that regardless of our religious, political, racial, ethnic, and socio-economic differences — we’re all part of the human family and worship the same God.”
“Christmas is undoubtedly the best known holiday of the three that will be celebrated,” White added. “But the miracle of the rededicated Second Holy Temple’s oil lamp that burned for eight days with only enough oil for one day that gave rise to Hanukkah’s Festival of Lights is recorded in both Christian and Hebrew scriptures. And the Nguzo Saba or the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa — unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith — can appeal to the best in all of us.”
Due to limited space in the library, reservations are being requested. Please call 843-597-2482 if you plan to attend.

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