By: David Lazarus – Israel Today; israeltoday.co.il
Local Christians are joined by Jews in celebrating Christmas in restored Aramean village
For the first time in modern history, Christmas was celebrated in a public square in Israel with carols sung in the same Aramaic language that dates back to the times of Jesus, and before. This unique historical event was held on Shabbat in the Aramean Maronite village of Bir’am in the Upper Galilee, just south of the Lebanese border.
Over 300 guests joined the celebration, including Jews and Christians, for the Christmas tree lighting and traditions dating back to 350 AD, when Christianity spread rapidly throughout the region.
The event was organized by members and supporters of the Israeli Christian Aramaic Association and members of the original Maronite community in northern Israel.