It’s almost Christmas. Shopping, baking, Christmas cards should be almost done.

Someone posted they didn’t relate to Christmas and the commercialism, which I can support. And that for many people who live alone, live below the poverty line or with disabilities, it can be a very lonely time, made worse by all the talk of big families and get togethers. I also believe this is true. I thought I’d go back and check out the history of Christmas, before Santa and the commercialism.

The word Christmas comes from a shortened form of Christ’s mass. It’s a religious and cultural celebration among billions of people around the earth commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ. It is preceded by the Advent or the Nativity fast and initiates the season of Christmastide, which historically in the West lasts twelve days.

The traditional Christmas narrative, the Nativity of Jesus, says Jesus was born in a stable in Bethlehem of Joseph and Mary.     Although the month and date of Jesus’ birth are unknown, by the early-to-mid fourth century the Western Christian Church had placed Christmas on December 25th . For Christians, the belief that God came into the world in the form of man to atone for the sins of humanity, rather than the exact date, is considered to be the primary purpose in celebrating.

Over the centuries and years and through various countries things like gift-giving, Christmas carols, Christmas trees, Christmas cards, Christmas decoration, Christmas lights, Christmas crackers, a special meal, and Santa have been added. Gift-giving and other aspects of the holidays have heightened economic activity to the point where the meaning of Christmas has almost disappeared.

In this time of lights and spending large amounts of money on gifts maybe we need to sit back and remember that birth long ago, and the people today who are poor or alone during this holiday season. Just a thought.

Merry Christmas everyone!