Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Happy Holidays!

It is apparently necessary, at this time of year, for Christians to complain about the use of "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". There are plenty of good reasons for this, not the least of which is that it is annoying to be constantly corrected. But after thinking about it, I'm not really sure if it's worth the fuss.

Even for Christians, we are clearly talking about more than one holiday here--it's not just Christmas. Between now and, say, early January, we have the following occasions:

Even from a strictly Christian perspective–-and even if your particular Christian tradition celebrates only a handful of the above occasions-–it is pretty clear that we are dealing with a whole season full of holy days. So...“Happy Holidays!” is surely a perfectly appropriate Christian greeting. “Happy season that includes Advent, Christmas, New Year’s, the Epiphany, the Baptism of Our Lord, and the commemorations and feast days for St. Thomas, St. Stephen, St. John, and the Holy Innocents!” just doesn’t have the same ring to it for some reason.

So, the next time you hear "Happy Holidays", don't just get annoyed. Instead, think of the rich opportunities for to celebrate God's love that fill this darkest time of the year--and give thanks.
~Pastor Sarah

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