Saturday, December 8, 2012
Santa Claus Did NOT Save Christmas
I think there was a movie about how Santa Claus saved Christmas, but I’m not really sure, because that’s not my usual viewing fare. However, yesterday morning at mass my pastor (whom I deeply respect) told a story about St. Nicholas, and I’m not too sure I believe that one, either. He said, basically, that St. Nicholas didn’t save Christmas, but he DID save Christianity, or at least as we know it. (Well, he didn’t do it alone; there was a role part that Jesus played in the story, to be totally honest.) I don’t know if I believe the story or not, but a quick Google search found a web site that listed ALL the stories about St. Nicholas. (You can see the story my pastor preached here: http://www.stnicholascenter.org/pages/bishop-nicholas-loses-his-cool/ )
It makes me wonder if my good pastor is spending too much time surfing the web; but a better use of YOUR time this Advent might be the daily readings from the book, Behold, He Comes, by Father Benedict Groeschel. I always make sure copies of the book are at my local adoration chapel. I believe I reviewed the book here at an earlier date, but I think this morning’s reading is worth pointing out:
“Why did this divine Person come as a human being to endure pain, suffering, fatigue, and death – experiences He could never have had as God? The mysterious answer echoes through the whole New Testament: “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should … have eternal life” (Jn 3:16).”
“Christ did not come to establish a Christian culture, although one gradually formed around His teaching and His Church. He did not come to heal all the sick or too raise all the dead. He did not come to win glory for Himself. The fact is that He came out of compassionate love to save a fallen, doomed world.”
Reading the papers this morning, I was reminded of how much we need Him, and His compassion, His mercy. Today.
No one “saved Christmas.” Whether people in this country are allowed to celebrate Christmas or whether at some date our “inclusive-minded” Congress will pass a law calling it a “Holiday Season” --- or whether our President or a czar eventually outlaws the word Christmas, still, Christmas will exist, because He DID come. It doesn’t matter if we publically celebrate His birthday, only that we acknowledge it, and gratefully accept HIS gift to us.