Holidays Ushered in with Christmas Tree Lighting

Marking the occasion of Christmas and the New Year, Birzeit University celebrated the lighting of the university's Christmas tree. The ceremony was attended by the Archbishop and Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Michel Sabbah, Fr. Manuel Hanna, Fr. Raji Abduallah, and a number of students, faculty and staff.

Students enjoyed folklore and music performances, including a Dabkeh performance by Nariz Dabkeh Troupe, carols performed by the Latin School Choir, and a performance by the Jerusalem Orthodox Scouts Troupe.

Sabbah emphasized that Christmas is about joy and happiness. "Christians and Muslims look forward to every December," said Sabbah. He said that Christmas is about spreading joy and hope in the hearts of our people despite the suffering caused by Israeli policies, and the outrageous violence occurring in the Arab countries.

Head of the Student Council Ahmad Al Ayesh underscored Palestinian unity. "Despite the continuous attempts to destroy the harmony between Muslims and Christians, Palestinians prove their solid connection and mutual love."

University President Abdellatif Abu Hijleh and the Dean of Student Affairs Mohammad Al Ahmad met earlier with Archbishop Michel Sabbah, and Fr. Hanna and Abduallah. All reaffirmed that Christmas is a celebration of joy for both Christians and Muslims.