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Supporting ‘Christ’ in Christmas

Thank the good Lord for brothers, Kevin and Robert Marley and their friend, Steven Ciambelli for keeping “Christ” in Christmas (“Keeping Christ in Christmas,” 12/1). We have refused for years to say, “Happy Holidays” and will not give Christmas cards without “Merry Christmas” on them.

Richard and Ann Bowler

Arlington, Mass.

‘Merry Christmas’ is our right

I may not be the most religious person, but I am behind these guys and their cause 100 percent (“Keeping Christ in Christmas,” 12/1). We have groups out there who want to destroy our Christian values. Many businesses and elected officials run and hide when it comes to this issue. All it takes is one person (with support from a civil liberties group) to abolish what is important to over 90 percent of Americans. I want to say “Merry Christmas” to all Christians. It is our right.

Ken Leahy

Weymouth, Mass.

Trivial issue

I am saddened to read a Catholic newspaper print a story about the triviality of businesses using the terms “Merry Christmas” vs. “Happy Holidays” (“Keeping Christ in Christmas,” 12/1). It seems it would be more appropriate for you to write about how, no matter what “slogan” they use to pull Christians into their stores, they are in fact deeming and perverting our sacred holy day of Christmas. First of all, as Catholics we should be reminding ourselves that we are not even in the Christmas season as the marketers would like us to believe -- we are in the penitential, preparatory season of Advent. And, why should we as Catholics be supporting businesses using our holy days as a way to get us to do things which we find sinful, namely, be greedy. I urge you, as a responsible Catholic paper, to focus on helping us return to a more honorable celebration of the seasons of Advent and Christmas that focuses on what those seasons are really about and not what Wal-Mart and their ilk is saying to get us in the stores spending the money we should be using to bring about the kingdom of God. May your Advent be filled with peace and your Christmas with joy!

Tobias Harkleroad

Silver Spring, Md.

Don’t assume

I have always found it annoying when people I don’t know personally assume that I celebrate Christmas, just because I am shopping during December. Maybe I don’t celebrate Christmas, Hanukah or Kwanzaa. Where do they come off making that decision? I am very happy when they use the more considerate and polite, “Happy Holidays.” And why do these three men (“Keeping Christ in Christmas,” 12/1) care that much about something so unimportant? There are people starving and suffering in this world, and they are spending so much time and effort trying to control how retail clerks attempt to be pleasant. It doesn’t seem very Christian of them!

Janet Ulmer

Sacramento, Calif.

A place to enjoy Christmas tradition

Hard to believe Christmas is here again. How fast the year passes. How much occurs during the 365 days of our existence. We rarely stop and ponder what has occurred during this period. In some ways we can say that about our lives. How fast it passes.

The Season of Advent brings us to a time of tradition. Traditions that are passed down from the elders and we, in turn, pass them on to our children.

Many people sometimes feel that with all the holiday hoopla, shopping, and the strong commercialization of Christmas, that something is still missing. Ironically, many cannot figure what it is. It’s not a material item that can purchased, nor is it money or a place in a warm climate that can replace this feeling of hopelessness. It is in the tradition of our faith. It is being part of a congregation be it small or large. It is giving yourself to others. It is forgiving. The greatest gift we have is within ourselves. We are all one in the same. We are all important.

The Christmas tradition can be enjoyed by all at St. Patrick Parish in Lawrence. The beautifully decorated church, narrative Scripture, and the warm sounds of Christmas carols permeating a cold winter evening. Make your commitment and if you haven’t, start this tradition, there is no better time. One of the most beautiful celebrations is the Christmas Midnight Vigil at 11:30 p.m. The entire church is lit by hundreds of small candles. A sight you’ll remember all year round. It’ll be one of the greatest gifts you can give to your family and most of all, to yourself.

Brian Durkin

Lawrence, Mass.

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