During this season of war filled with sadness, heaviness, tragedy and darkness, and despite the cancellations and forgoing of the city’s traditional tree decorating and Christmas celebrations that characterize Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth, we knew we have to bring the focus back on our Messiah.

It’s not about decorations, Santa or big celebrations, it’s about the birth of our Lord Jesus and what it meant to humanity.

We decided to make this Christmas a meaningful one by visiting 17 different educational establishments, such as kindergartens, special education for children with disabilities, as well as mixed schools for both Arab and Jews.

Every single child and student received a gift box, inside a special greeting magnet that says Jesus is the reason for this season.

In a lot of our Christmas celebrations we had Santa there, not because that figure carries a special meaning to us as Christians, but because we want to use a well recognized character that kids relate to Christmas and have Santa tell children that he is not the reason for Christmas, but Jesus is.

Seeing Nazareth with no Christmas decorations during this season, the sadness and heaviness in the air due to the war situation in Israel, we wanted to bring that element back and use things like decorations and Santa as a tool to reach people with the main message of Christmas, which is the birth of our Messiah.

Christmas is not about celebrations, decorations, gifts, Santa, but it’s about the Good News and salvation of every one who accepts Jesus into their hearts.

Today, from Nazareth — Jesus’ hometown, I want to personally thank YOU, our dearest friends and supporters, for standing with us and being such a blessing to all of us here.

On behalf of the Shalash family and the entire family of Home of Jesus the King Church, we wish you a wonderful Christmas and a blessed New Year.

We pray that next year will be a peaceful one, and that the Prince of Peace will come soon!

Continue praying with us for the situation in Israel, for our people, for us to stand as God’s witnesses in these difficult days, to share Jesus’ good news in times of bad news.

We want to be bridge builders and peacemakers by sharing the love of Yeshua.

Subscribe and follow our weekly updates as we continually share amazing testimony of how God is working in the hearts of people in the Land these days, both Jews and Arabs. Many of them grateful that we manage to bring a smile to their faces at a time like this.

May we all continue to be a light for many in times of great darkness.