Sunday, November 19, 2006

Santa v. Jesus

Yes, It's that time of year again, when parents cringe when turning on the telly, or going to the mall, or even getting the mail. We are beset by advertisements, enticements to avarice and discontent, and all under the smiling visage of 'Santa Claus'. It's hard enough for adults to keep a clear head between Halloween and New Years, but how do we keep our kids focused on Christ for Christmas?

In past years, I said nothing of Santa, or as age demanded more details, I told my kids the history of St. Nicholas. But, being now in school, they're surrounded by kids with other notions of Christmas. Call me a grinch, but I'm not inclined to tell my kids that an ancient saint is going to bring them the things they ask for, as seen in the latest 'Toys-R-Us' advert. I'd rather have the Incarnation be the focus of our festivities, rather than the consumerism.

And, by the by, the Chinese are positioned, once again, to make a killing on our fiscal incontinence. I wonder if anyone sees the irony in the primary color of holiday trappings as being Red.

Parents out there, what do you do?

3 comments:

Holiday At The Sea said...

i agree with you. i think that the mighty dollar is replacing God in America.
i would like to point out that there are very few chinese who are being rewarded our $ due to our Christmas purchases. the ones who make the toys and various items that we buy are very likely made by prisoners who are imprisoned because they are Christians. the only reward these brothers and sisters get is an eternal one.

http://www.persecution.com/about/index.cfm?action=vom

Sparki said...

We've raised our kids to believe that Santa is a "game" that everybody plays. The idea is to secretly buy something that will bless/help somebody else and give it to them anonymously. If somebody asks them what they want from Santa, they are instructed to say something modest and then ask the other person, "What do YOU want from Santa?"

We select names off one of those "giving" trees, trying to match a kid the same age/gender of each of ours, and have the kids "play Santa" for the needy person. We also collect warm clothing, boots, coats, etc. (usually from cast-offs given to us but I frequently find these things at GREAT prices in the summer time when I'm thrifting). We make sure they are clean and useable, and donate them to Catholic Social Services, along with any toys the kids received as birthday/Christmas gifts and never played with -- they get too much. We let them play with the stuff they are really interested in and hide the rest. They almost NEVER ask for the other things, so they go into our Saint Nicholas box to be donated.

JimBob, check this week's Register for a list of items Catholic Social Services is collecting in Lincoln, if you're in a position to join in the fun.

Anonymous said...

Sparki,

That's a wonderful idea! I love it. It deals with the whole thing nicely, and without the "You lied to me about Santa" trauma that a lot of kids go through. It teaches the true meaning of the season, and teaches kids to share.

The Big Seester