A Civic Holiday

What is a civic holiday?
 
Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, the Winter Solstice, Christmas or Kwanzaa, chances are your holiday traditions are rooted in universal values like generosity, community, resilience, forgiveness, love and hope.
 
Throughout 2020, we have had many opportunities to reflect on how our simplest actions, such as mask wearing or standing apart, might affect others. We have been made keenly aware of the suffering and need both laid bare and intensified by this pandemic. We have seen up close how social, political and cultural divisions weaken and threaten our democracy.
 
A civic holiday, then, might mean celebrating virtually, or in a small gathering outdoors, instead of crowding friends and relations around the family table. It might mean honoring your loved ones with donations to charity instead of material gifts. It might mean listening first, and judging later, when a friend or relation asserts a strongly-held opinion that angers you.
 
A civic holiday might, above all, may mean taking a break from bad news, holding onto faith in one another, and pausing to give thanks for the good things (there were some!) that happened in 2020. At The Civic Circle, we are grateful for all the supporters, teaching artists, collaborators, volunteers and students who make this work possible. And we wish you a civic holiday, full of unity, faith, and generosity of spirit.

Lester Hine on Unsplash

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