Merry Christmas!

by Richard Poe
Thursday, December 25, 2003

10:20 am Eastern Time

…and a Happy New Year.

It seems hard to believe that Christmas needs defending — from Christians, at any rate — but many Biblical fundamentalists refuse to celebrate the holiday because of its pagan origins.

Christ may or may not have been born on December 25. No one really knows. But it seems an odd coincidence that the Romans celebrated the birth of the “unconquered sun god” Sol Invictus on that date, long before they accepted Christianity. In her essay, “In Defense of Christmas,” Skylar H. Burris acknowledges the pagan origins of Christmas, but explains why she keeps the holiday anyway.

The Catholic Encyclopedia offers a characteristically detailed, objective and scholarly history of Christmas and how we came to celebrate it. Go here.


5 Responses to “Merry Christmas!”


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  1. Rightminded says:

    It is just another addition to a long list of spectacular, Christmas Season joys, to log onto another joy in my life (here) , and see Merry Christmas written in six different languages.

    Then, to add icing to the cake (you can tell it’s the Christmas Season, food looms large in my thoughts), I go to Mr. Poe’s blog and get to learn something new about this season of no equal.

    All I can say to Mr. Poe and Nina O’varis of Gallilea is:

    Thank you very much
    Thank you very much
    That’s the nicest thing that anyone’s ever done for me
    I may sound double Dutch
    But my delight is such
    I feel as if a losing war’s been won for me

    Go here for the rest of the words to one of the best songs in a Christmas Musical.

    If you have ever seen this movie, you will know what I am talking about. If not, you do not know what you’re missing.

    And since my Christmas season lasts until after New Year — MERRY CHRISTMAS AND GOD BLESS ALL OF US!

  2. Michael J. Jose says:

    I have heard that it is most likely that Jesus was born in the spring, as that was the only time of year that the shepherds would be allowed to get that close to the city.

    But other than as an historical trivium, this is irrelevant. If you want to celebrate Christ’s birth, why does it matter whether you celebrate it on the day he was actually born? The date is not given in the Bible, so it obviously is not that important; any more than it is important exactly what Jesus looked like.

  3. La Shawn Barber says:

    Hi Richard. Great blog.

    I wanted to let you know that Skylar Burris is a woman. She edited a short story I wrote last year. Go here.

  4. Richard Poe says:

    I wanted to let you know that Skylar Burris is a woman.

    Whoops! Thanks for the tip. I’ll fix that.

  5. Billy VerPlanck says:

    Dear Richard:

    Great to see you back. I hope all went well with the writing.

    Happy Holidays and a Great New Year.

    Health, Love, and Music, BV

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