Friday, December 07, 2007

Time To Decorate For Christmas

Well, everywhere but at our house as we were growing up. We started on the afternoon of December 24. That’s when the white candles went in the windows, the tree came in from the back terrace to be strung with lights, and things started to happen.

Until then, it was Advent, a season of its own in our church, and Christmas would come in its own time. When it did come, it lasted until Epiphany as it should. Then, and only then, did we take the lights off the tree, the tree out of the living room and the candles out of the windows.

Our church (RC) sees things differently from the secular celebrations. It’s not a battle, a “we’re right and you’re wrong,” but just a different view. Secular: start the celebration early and wrap it up the day after. As we say, nothing is as over as Christmas. Religious: prepare with a special season, then celebrate for eight days afterwards.

I’m not sure how the Wise Men from the East (aka, the Three Kings) would view their symbolic gifts with a 4:00 a.m. or 5:00 a.m. store opening on one of the three big Christmas sales days. Two women got into a fight locally a few years ago over a Cabbage Patch doll; definitely not following the tradition of the Magi.

Up the line a bit, one church has (or had) the tradition of Baby Jesus zipping down a wire from the choir loft into the manger in the sanctuary at the stroke of midnight. I’m sure, as they say, it’s worth the price of admission. No offense, Bambino.


Anonymous RuthC said...

I've come to accept the beginning of the Christmas shopping frenzy the day after Thanksgiving. And I don't go near stores before, so am able to avoid the decorations pre-Halloween.

But the ultimate shock was the year I was in Texas, heading to somewhere about 11:30 Christmas morning and passed the local recycling center---only to see discarded Christmas trees.

December 08, 2007 8:03 PM  
Blogger Tom Carten said...

Could have been from dealers.

December 08, 2007 8:06 PM  
Anonymous RuthC said...

Ah, but it wasn't. There was still a bit of tinsel gleaming in the sunlight.
My sister, a local, said that was common in the area. Families would have a quick Christmas celebration, then head off for vacation.

December 08, 2007 9:22 PM  
Blogger Tom Carten said...

A pox on them.

December 08, 2007 10:10 PM  

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