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A Christmas Truce at the World War I Front

(This article was published in The Remnant in 2006 after having first appeared on the Your Guide to 20th Century History website. It is reproduced here with the permission of the author. The original song Christmas in the Trenches by John McCutcheon is well worth listening to as you read this incredible story from a day and age not so very far removed from our own but, alas, fading in every way from the consciousness of "grown up" and "enlightened" men who've lost sight of God, Country and even who and what they are anymore-- much less the true meaning of Christmas.  In honor of our annual tradition, once again CHRISTMAS IN THE TRENCHES: THE TRUE STORY Michael J. Matt)

And for your listening pleasure...




Friday, December 23, 2016

Debunking the "Christmas is Pagan" Myth

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Having once been an Evangelical, I was heavily exposed to the "Christmas is Pagan" or "Christmas has Pagan origins" movement in the Western world. The movement is heavily concentrated in the United States, with large pockets in Canada, Australia, and other parts of the Anglosphere. It's primarily a Protestant problem, which was popularised during the Protestant religious movements of the 17th through 19th centuries. Today it is most aggressively pushed by Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, Church of God and other Fundamentalist sects. Sadly, attacks against this holiday are used to introduce suspicion of mainstream Christian denominations, and the Catholic Church in particular.

The Fundamentalist attack on Christmas is centred around the date of December 25, and actually has a rather ancient origin. The 12th-century Syrian Orthodox Bishop, Jacob Bar-Salibi, proposed the following:

"It was a custom of the Pagans to celebrate on the same 25 December the birthday of the Sun, at which they kindled lights in token of festivity. In these solemnities and revelries the Christians also took part. Accordingly when the doctors of the Church perceived that the Christians had a leaning to this festival, they took counsel and resolved that the true Nativity should be solemnised on that day." (Christianity and Paganism in the Fourth to Eighth Centuries, Ramsay MacMullen. Yale:1997, p. 155)

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