There's a war on Christmas ... kinda

Dean of Yale Divinity School muses about 'the war on Christmas'. It's probably not what you've been thinking.

This blog article, by Andrew McGowan of the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale University, is focused on the experience in the USA, but, it easily applies to the setting in Canada.

There is a war on Christmas. Presumably you have read about it - there are regular skirmishes at this time of year. This time a parade in Charleston, West Virginia, became its epicenter for 72 hours after the mayor wanted it to be a “Winter” parade rather than a “Christmas” parade. One of the locals whose FaceBook post was picked up by the New York Times wrote more revealingly than intended, I suspect:

“The new mayor needs to be voted out if she does away with the Christmas parade. Christmas is all about Christ, not some winter parade.”

And then there was Scott Walker in Wisconsin tweeting with a decorated conifer insisting “this is not a holiday tree.” 


Given that was on the eighth of November it was hard to see how it could be an anything tree, although that may be a different point.

There is a war on Christmas - but it’s not that one. In fact those news stories are reports on one key battle that was lost long ago, during the mid-twentieth century. Once upon a time Christmas was a twelve-day feast, that began with Christmas Eve and ended at Epiphany on January 6th. That ancient Christian observance however was overcome generations ago by the invasion of Macy’s Christmas, which begins on Thanksgiving or Black Friday, and ends on Christmas Eve.

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