DETROIT (WXYZ) – While many Christians will celebrate Christmas with church, presents and a family dinner there are thousands of people in the metro Detroit area that will get the day off, but have little to celebrate.
It’s why for several decades people of the Jewish faith have taken advantage of the day to step up volunteer efforts during what’s now called “Mitzvah Day.” They have also joined together with those of Muslim faith to give back.
“It’s a day we’re proud of,” said David Kurzmann, a member of the Jewish Community Relations Council and AJC. “It’s a day that, for decades now, has become a family tradition.”
Nearly 1,000 Jewish and Muslim volunteers spread themselves across Detroit on Christmas to take part in ‘mitzvahs’ — good deeds — helping Detroit area social service agencies in 51 different communities.
“We can enable the Christian employees here to take some time to be with their families and take the place of some regular volunteers from the Christian community that would regularly be here,” said Kurzmann.