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Monday, December 25, 2023

It's MERRY CHRISTMAS, No Matter How You Say It!

By:   Fr. Walter Pasicznyk
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It's MERRY CHRISTMAS, No Matter How You Say It!


Etymology, the word comes to us from Egypt, the land of Saint Augustine.  The root, Christ is from the Greek Χριστός, Christos, khris-tos, being translated ‘Messiah’ or ‘the Savior.’  The suffix –mas, pronounced like ‘ma’ but in plural and not like ‘z’ but an ‘s,’  [NOT pronounced 'mass' but 'mahs'], is the ancient Egyptian word, from what is called the Hieroglyphic language, translated ‘nativity’ or ‘day of birth.’ 

Merry Christmas:

The greeting we know in English comes to us from Brittany in the Middle Ages.  The word "merry" from that time means 'powerful, or mighty.  Sort of changes the meaning of Robin Hood and his merry men, doesn't it?  The word Christmas came to Brittany through Rome from Alexandria/Egypt.  Christ clearly comes from the Greek Kristos as Greek was the international language.  The second half of the word, 'mas' comes from indigenous Egyptians as 'mas' well 'mas' means day of birth, or nativity of.  So Christmas means "The Nativity of Christ" and Merry means "powerful' or 'mighty'.  So now you can see the greeting is telling us to have a powerful, mighty or a strongly meaningful celebration of the day of the nativity of the Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ.

Father I get so upset when I see Merry X-mas, or Happy Holidays, or Season’s Greetings!

Did you know that the use of "X-mas", too, comes from the early Church?  Kristos in Greek is written Χριοτός so that the abbreviation as common in the church for Christ was to use the capital letter chi, the first letter in the title Christ in Greek, Kristos as transliterated into English but again written in Geek it is “Χριοτός.”  So Christ is in X-mas, only one need to understand Early Christianity, Kristosmas.

On Happy Holidays, do you know that the word “holidays” comes from “holy days”?  The greeting is actually Happy Holy Days.  When you get your new church calendar stop and take a look at how many Holy Days we have between the Nativity of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on the 25th of December and the Encounter of Our Lord with Simeon and Anna on the 2nd of February, the end of the Christmas Season, and you will grasp that this greeting originated within the Church and that Season’s Greetings coincides with this multiplicity of Holy Days.  We have 40 joy filled days of God-With-Us.

Christ is Born!  Glorify Him!

Christ is Baptized in the Jordan!  Indeed He is baptized!

Christ is among us!  Indeed He is (among us)!

Are some of “our church’s” season’s greetings.

So now, when someone speaks up about “X”-mas or says “ex-mas,” you can speak up to them that it is Kristos-mas from the Church Greek in an abbreviated form and NOT an “X” in English.  It is the Greek letter “chi” not the English letter “x” [eks].  Or when someone says, “Happy Holidays” you can respond to them “Yes, Happy Holy Days to you.”  Or when someone says, “Season’s Greetings” offer them in reply a , “Christ is Born!”  Use these opportunities to speak up about your church and it’s traditions to enlighten the world we live in.

May you be blessed with a Merry Kristosmas Season!

Christ is Born!

Glorify Him!

Christmas at RTV — KEEP HOPE ALIVE: A Christmas Reminder from Michael J. Matt

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Last modified on Sunday, December 24, 2023