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The Judge Who Stole Christmas    by Randy D. Singer order for
Judge Who Stole Christmas
by Randy D. Singer
Order:  USA  Can
WaterBrook Press, 2005 (2005)
* * *   Reviewed by Melissa Parcel

When Thomas Hammond goes to the town square in Possum, Virginia to portray Joseph in his church's live Nativity scene, he doesn't realize that this year will be different from all of the others. After a stranger questions the religious beliefs represented, Thomas finds himself and the town served with an injunction from the ACLU asserting that the crèche is unconstitutional.

Jasmine Woodfaulk has come a long way from her Possum roots. She's finishing up law school and only has a few formalities to complete before taking a job at a high-powered New York firm. One of those requirements is working legal aid cases, and her professor asks her to represent Thomas as a favor. How can a federal judge outlaw Christmas? Jasmine and the town of Possum become embroiled in the legal battle of a lifetime to clarify the fine line between faith and law.

This is a straight-from-the-headlines look at the real battles going on in our legal system today. Singer takes difficult legal issues and applies them to real life - making the reader understand the controversy by placing it in a setting with which most can identify. The characters in this novella have strong faith and are willing to stand up for their beliefs, regardless of which side of the issue they are on. The most admirable character to me was the judge, Cynthia Baker-Kline. Her rulings show that it is possible to interpret the Constitution in many ways, and that one must look past emotions and get to the true heart of the matter.

Ttrial attorney Randy Singer brings to light court system rulings in the United States right now. From debates about the Pledge of Allegiance to cases on the display of religion in public arenas, the author cites the rationale behind court cases, along with legal arguments. However, The Judge Who Stole Christmas is not all legal treatise. There's a great deal of humanity, humor, and a true holiday spirit. The book provides food for thought, to encourage discussion and help readers examine their own ideas about this controversial subject.

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