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Ready or not, the holidays are upon us. Celebrations are wonderful but can also be a time of great stress. After a long tumultuous election, this might be one of the most stressful holiday time yet. Many of us will have to dig deep to find the joy and peace that this season brings. However, I believe this is a great opportunity to make a difference in our family, our community and our country. This is an opportunity for us to reject the divisiveness and fear we read in the headlines. Change only comes when we stand up and make a difference. The holidays offer us a chance to share our traditions with others and make an effort to learn about the hopes, dreams and culture of our neighbors. New York City institutions and cultural centers give us the best opportunity to celebrate and learn about Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Diwali, Ramadan and the many other holidays we share with our neighbors. We can start to build bridges of understanding and empathy rather than fear and separation. Let this holiday season bring new peace and joy to our homes.

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Merry Christmas! Joyous Kawanzaa! Happy New Year!

Myra Consuela

Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center

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