The Christmas Season

Yes, I said the Christmas Season, not the Holiday Season or whatever is politically correct these days so as not to be insensitive to non-Christians. Well guess what? I am a Christian and while Christ may not have been born on the actual date we celebrate it is symbolic of the birth of Christ and a celebration of his birth. I will say it publicly, that Jesus Christ is my savior and my redeemer, that I believe he was the son of God, Jehovah, that he came to live on the earth and to be the lamb, to die on the cross for the sins of all those who believe in him and God and the Holy Spirit, that I am reborn anew and shall pass from this earth into the Kingdom of Heaven through his sacrifice when I die. So when I celebrate Christmas I celebrate his birth and what that means for me as a Christian, first and foremost. Having just been a cast member of A Christmas Carol with the Keyano Theatre Company I was reminded of that in many ways and the entire production was a joy to be involved in, a physically demanding joy to be sure, with a full time job and a family here in Fort McMurray on top of a very busy rehearsal and on stage schedule over that month and a half. Our whole western society is based on Christian principles and while we seem to have drifted away from many of those principles over recent years, it has been the underpinnings of modern western cultures.

Growing up in my household at Christmas was always fun, with lots of family, lots of food, lots of presents and good memories from when I was a little boy right up to present. Things are a bit different now that I have my own family and that large extended family has drifted apart, but now my focus is a Christ centered one and I am much less concerned with gift giving and more interested in good will toward men. I still give and receive gifts to and from family and friends, still put up a Christmas tree and lights for sure, for I am not a Jehovah’s Witness. It is a time when I think about and actively involve myself in events that help my fellow men, as I am able. We took a collection after each of our shows of A Christmas Carol and raised close to $10,000 for the Wood Buffalo Food Bank, an idea advanced by myself and a fellow Christian in the cast, Karen, who played Mrs. Dilber. In recent years my Christmas celebrations have been a bit smaller, with either my wife and I celebrating together, sometimes with our daughter and sometimes with my family in British Columbia, but it is still a time of year I look forward to, for the most part. The commercialization of Christmas I find a bit disgusting, even though I do participate in the annual shopping frenzy I admit, but it is a pure money grab for many businesses, some of whom fail or thrive depending on how well they do in selling their wares to the public. I love Christmas carols, but after a month of hearing them everywhere I go I get sick of hearing them, so they lose their meaning and that is really too bad.

So what do I have to say about this move in our society to get away from saying or showing signage that says Merry Christmas? I think it is a real shame, but I think it is something that should be left to individual companies and individuals themselves, not something dictated and not something that people should be punished for doing. I read recently about one young man being asked not to come into work because he was saying Merry Christmas on the job to people! Come on, where is the humanity in that kind of punitive action? If you are a Christian or a Christian based organization and you want to say Merry Christmas in verbal or signage then you should be able to do so freely and without fear of any type of punitive action by anyone. This goes too far and needs to stop, right now! I say a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all! Peace and good will to all men and God Bless Us, Everyone!

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