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Keep Christ in Christmas...
Sunday, December 04 2011

Jesus is the Reason for the Season...

In the Gospel of John, Jesus tells us:

"Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit. Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there also will my servant be. The Father will honor whoever serves me."  -John 12:24-26, NAB

Advent season has begun.  It is at times like these that Christianity comes to the forefront of our culture, but how do we celebrate the holiday?  Do we focus our energies on shopping, gifts, and consumerism, or do we see this as a time to openly share our faith?

The Christmas season, unfortunately, has been defiled by our culture's focus on the gifts we give.  Do not get me wrong, I love exchanging gifts with others, but sometimes, it seems like we are losing the meaning of Christmas in it all.  Our kids are being spoiled, and most kids associate Christmas more with gifts than with celebrating the birth of Christ.  It's time to change all of that.

So, you may be wondering what today's verse has anything to do with celebrating Christmas and the Advent season.  Well, as Catholics, it is time to give up the consumerism that is encroaching on our Tradition, and, in its place, it is time to use the Advent season as a time to openly share our faith with others.  Let's put down the credit cards and pick up a good, Catholic book.  Let's stop giving gift cards and start giving Bibles.  Let's stop saying, "Happy Holidays," and start saying "Merry Christmas!"  Forget about being politically correct, and begin honoring your God in everything you say and do.

You have probably seen the bumper stickers that say, "Keep Christ in Christmas."  You have definitely seen the t-shirts that read, "Jesus is the reason for the season."  I have even seen a button that said, "It's okay to wish me a Merry Christmas."  These are more than just catch phrases; there is a lot of truth behind them.  Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of our Lord, and we must keep that at the center of our celebrations.

Let's stop following the rest of our culture, and set ourselves apart.  Christmas belongs to us, the Catholics and Christians of the world, and not to the large retailers, credit card giants, and greeting card companies.  They have made a mockery of this wonderful holiday, but only we can stop it.  To turn things around, it begins with us.  What will you do to help reclaim Christmas for Christ?


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