Merry Myth?

According to the American Atheist billboard and website, Jesus is the myth, not Santa.
by Benjamin O'Loughlin, LC | Source: www.FormationToolbox.com
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If you're in New York City this year and happen to walk through Times Square, you'll see a four-story billboard explaining the "true meaning of the Holidays."


   I respect American Atheists. Freedom of speech goes for them as well. However, freedom of speech is a two-edged sword. When you expound your views, you have to be ready to defend them. Freedom of speech is really freedom to dialogue, to put our opinions to the test.


   According to the American Atheist billboard and website, the true meaning of Christmas is "family, friends, and love." Jesus is the myth, not Santa.


Here's the test: what is Christmas?


The word

Christmas comes from Old English Crīstesmæsse: "Christ's Mass."


The "myth" 

Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, born between 7 and 2 B.C. He was a real Palestinian Jew who declared himself to be God, founded a Church, and died on a cross. After his death, his followers claimed that he rose from the dead, and in spite of heavy persecution by Jews and Romans, converted most of the Western world to the new faith.


The "merry"

Santa Claus is a mythical gift-giving personage based on the historical 4th-century St. Nicholas of Bari, a Catholic bishop renowned for his generosity.


   Jesus is the fact. Santa is the myth. Family, friends and love are wonderful things that we all appreciate at Christmas. But the family we celebrate is the Holy Family. The love we contemplate is God's. He became one of us. If you take Christ out of Christmas you have nothing left to be merry about - you'll have to wait until New Years.


And the friends? You can't party alone.




Benjamin O'Loughlin writes for www.formationtoolbox.com

This Catholic Formation Service is also available by e-mail.

To subscribe please write to: editor@formationtoolbox.com



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