The meaning of Christmas and being a Christmas subversive

The meaning of Christmas and being a Christmas subversive

Think the Christmas tree is just another one of those secular symbols of Christmas? Not so, says the Pope. He says that the evergreen tree is symbolic of the tree of life, a figure of Christ. This should be news to all those government offices that put up Christmas ... oops, I mean Holiday trees as an acceptable non-religious substitute for all those religious decorations.

Actually, looks like the Grinch is already on to it. In Pasco County, Florida, the city attorney said Christmas trees are banned from public buildings.

Think that’s bad? I heard of a school that banned red and green decorations of any kind because they’re Christmas colors. How do we counteract this political correctness run amuck? Make sure to remind people that it’s Christmas at every opportunity.

Don’t let someone wish you “Happy holidays.” If someone, like a store clerk, says it to me, I always make sure to cheerefully reply, “Merry Christmas.” More often than not they grin back like I’ve just given them permission to subvert the totalitarian regime. I also don’t countenance “holiday” cards or “holiday” songs. If it doesn’t say Christmas, I have no time for it.

  • Maybe a lot of this is isolated on the left coast – I don’t know.  I was out at the Fox Run Mall this morning in Portsmouth, NH, and they had the religious Christmas music going (mixed in with secular tunes as well), there were nativities for sale in all kinds of stores (a huge one on display in the Hallmark window), many of the clerks were saying “Merry Christmas” (in Sears, Macys, and other stores), etc.  And the Seacoast NH area is Kerry Country20;Donellowship. I also try to make it last for twelve days. My son, depending on our schedules, doesn’t always get his presents on the 25th. Sometimes it’s the night before; sometimes not until Twelfth Night.

    How many “good Catholics” wait until Twelfth Night for anything? Maybe spread the good cheer out a bit. I did have a close friend once who gave me twelve little gifts, to be opened one at a time, for each day of the season. That remains a favorite with me.

    But that’s just me.

  • On the plus side, my chain supermarket (Chicago burbs)is playing Christmas carols including very religious ones.  Conversely, their baggers and checkers all say, “Have a Happy Holiday!”  To which, I reply, “Merry Christmas!!!”
    Happy holiday is so insipid a greeting that it ranks with “Have a nice day” and the old smile buttons as totally meaningless.
    The real gripe that I have is when practicing Catholics use it among each other or when they send out those banal “holiday” cards with snowmen or some such crap.  Also the photo cards (instead of enclosing the photo with a religious card).
    We all need to assert ourselves as Christians and not hide our own religious holy days under a bushel of politically correct mush.

  • Our associate pastor (a young orthodox priest) announced after Mass on Sunday that he didn’t want anyone saying to him after Mass “Happy Holidays”. He said, “We’re CHRISTIANS, we say Merry Christmas! Christmas is a Holy Day, not a Holiday!”. The congregation, which is pretty sedate at this Mass, started clapping for him enthusiastically. We’re all sick of PC run amuck.

  • JenB writes
    I must have missed the day that the Jewish folk and the Muslim folk came out in droves to ensure that NO Christianity was seen in public during this time of year.

    Yes, JenB. You missed the day.  In New York City, Jews and Muslims have contrived to have their religious symbols declared secular, and Christian religious symbols banned. see Thomas More Law Center

    As Bill Donohue points out, had Christian symbols been accepted and the Jewish or Muslim symbols banned, the Catholic League would have joned them as amicus in their legal fight.  In reality, the Catholic League and St Thomas More are alone in this faceoff with the city.


  • “Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you.” I believe was the first message on the first Chirstmas card in the U.S. in 1875. I dont see any reason to change.
    So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you!!!

  • Whether it is Buon Natale, Joyeaux Noel (sp.?), Feliz Navidad, Nollaig Shona Dhuit or any other language – it still means Happy Christmas…!!!

    No compromising – let’s keep Christ in Christmas!

  • David writes:

    <objection whatsoever…unless it’s the gigantic Frosty the Snowman who’s serving as “cover.” wink

    This is the time o’ the year when we answer our office phones “Merry Christmas! How can I help you?”

    (Also the time when, upon hearing someone answering the phone with “Happy Holidays, XYZ Company” one politely responds with “And a very MERRY CHRISTMAS to you, too!”)

    Francis, your associate pastor sounds like our rector, Father Murphy. Every year he practically SNARLS at us to INSIST on saying “Merry Christmas.” (This is a family blog…I can’t repeat what he has to say about the phrase “Happy Holidays. <g>)

    Merry Christmas, everyone!

  • Think about it….there’s something special about those two words taken together…what other ‘holiday’ uses that cheery little adjective…what other occasion resonates so deeply in our hearts…believers and unbelievers alike…and that’s WHY the Grinches want to stamp it out and remove reminders of it from their stores….inside and out….and… Don’t forget……give a jingle to TARGET and remind THEM to send you a copy of their November and December sales report!!

  • And a brief plug for Woburn, Mass, up the road from me, which has a very large Christmas display on the town green (aka, the rotary at Main Street).  Including a complete manger scene.  I haven’t really scene those extreme secularist challenges in Mass., either.  Wonder why?

  • Around 10 years ago I sent a Christmas card to a Japanese friend in Tokyo. It wasn’t much of a Christmas card in that it displayed a Christmas tree and read “Seasons Greetings”. I did not want to offend. He sent me another card back that displayed a nativity scene and read “merry Christmas”. I learned my lesson.

    I converse regularily with people of different faiths and they have no problem with Christmas. Islamic colleagues in celebrate Christmas and have no problem saying “merry Christmas”. An east Indian Sikh collegue says his family celebrates Christmas and he wants them to know the true meaning. All of these people said they do not understand the hostility to this holy day.

    This holy day where we celebrate the coming of our lord has a universal appeal and draws in all humanity of good will.

    No, it is not people of different faiths who are offended. Except one. The secular humanist whom the Vatican has correctly identified as “Christophobe”. They not infifferent to the faith. They have a nihilistic hatred for the faith and seek to destroy it at every opportunity. That is the real enemy we must confront.

    I always say merry Christmas when addressing a store clerk or any other public encounter. In most cases, by the way they looked at me, I might as well have just said the F word. That is the stage where the cultural elites have taken things.


  • I’m sitting here listening to Barbara Streisand sing “O Little Town of Bethlehem” on the radio. No stereotype intended, but she’s not the first Jewish entertainer to make a buck off of Christmas.

    The two best-selling Christmas songs of all time are “White Christmas” and “The Christmas Song” written by Irving Berlin and Mel Torme, respectively, both Jewish.

    I wonder if I were to emigrate to Israel, or India, or any of the Muslim states, would I be able to get them to remove references to their religious holidays because they offend me?  Of course not.  I would be stupid to expect them to.

    If I had any musical talent, (which I don’t), and had the inspiration to write a Hannukah song, I would probably do it.