Keep the faith
It has come to my stark attention that our society is gradually losing the real meaning of Christmas.
People are more and more into "happy holidays" rather than "Merry Christmas." It is going to be a natural follow-up the more and more our country becomes secular. That is ungodly. "Happy holidays" just doesn't get it for Christians. This expression misses the mark for more than committed Christians.
Even though Jesus is not God for many people like the Jews or Muslims, and countless others, Jesus was a great prophet. Many non-Christians and even non-believers respect Christ of history and the strong impact he has made on civilizations through the centuries.
It seems to me that such a big segment of our society is not so much flagrantly opposed to Jesus. It's just that they don't know who He was in history and what He means to at least one-third of the people on this planet.
The point I'm making is that we Christians have the certain privilege, as well as the duty, of making Christ known better in our secularist society. We have been given the great gift of our Christian faith. In order for us to be stronger in our faith and to enjoy it more, we need to share it with others as much as we can.
The big church word for this is evangelization. This does not mean proselytizing, that is trying to strong-arm somebody into believing the way we do. But just to show by our example how much our faith means to us.
One good example we can give, especially at this time of year, is by our language: to wish others a "Merry Christmas," not just "happy holidays." This way we are keeping Christ in Christmas because we really know that Jesus is the reason for this season.
And so, I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas. By this I mean that we celebrate the best we can who Jesus is to us.
Fr. Tom Hesse, pastor
Holy Family Church, Eudora