Friday, December 3

On Banning Christ from Christmas

Parts of the blogosphere are up in arms about the banning of Christian symbols (dare we say Christ) from Christmas displays and the whole holiday season. Complaining about this in some sense is a little strange on the part of the Christian. Perhaps instead of resisting it, we should encourage the practice.

After all, do we not bitterly complain that the Christmas message is overwhelmed and lost by the crass commercialization of Christmas? Do we not complain that the real Christmas message is lost? Do we not wince when TV specials and other "leaders" of our society tell us the "real message of Christmas is giving"? And indeed it is a rare "Christmas" special that remembers what is the true meaning of Christmas.

Christ is the message of Christmas. Last year, my kids made Christmas cards reading "The real meaning of Christmas is ... (turn page) Easter!" On Christmas we celebrate that God gave his only Son to be born a man so that he might die and redeem our sins. It isn't a special day because St. Nicholas tossed some gold coins in some poor girl's shoes or to remind us that "giving" is more important than "getting". Let's face it, perhaps it would be good if Christ and the religious holiday was further removed from the commercial saturnalia which take place on December 25th. Every year, Christians struggle to remember in the din of the holiday "cheer" that message, which we hold in our hearts.

It may be that the true Christian believers are in the minority and the real message of Christian must be drowned out by the Spending frenzy which is the Santa Saturnalia. But even if it is not the case, do we really want the serious message of Christmas to be drowned out in the noise? Or should we instead, encourage removing ourselves from competition with the frenzy and hold our celebrations apart.