Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays – What’s the Difference?

December 6, 2008 at 1:55 pm 2 comments

I was doing a Google search today and found myself not knowing the best keywords to choose to find a list of community programs for this season of giving. I wondered, should I be searching under “Christmas” community programs, or should I search under “Holiday” community programs?

It was just a few years ago when the game of “political correctness” reached widespread proportions threatening to change the meaning of a very special season once simply called – Christmas!

Nowadays, because of fear, or the need to please others, or the sense that we must be very courteous not to offend other people not celebrating Christmas, the word “holiday” is increasingly being used to mean Christmas!

History tells us that the origin of the word CHRISTMAS was taken from CHRIST. Christmas is a celebration of Christ’s birthday. Christ is the essence of Christmas. He was, is now and will forever be the reason for and meaning of Christmas and the Christmas season.

To change that to HOLIDAY departs from the true meaning and purpose of this special celebration. The word HOLIDAY by definition means any day of exemption from work to honor an event or a person. By using “Happy Holidays” to mean “Merry Christmas” is putting Christ on equal footing with every mortal being for whom we celebrate holidays, such as George Washington, veterans, laborers or Martin Luther King, Jr. Reducing acknowledgment of Christ’s birth to the level with which we honor a once-great person is dishonoring the one that is above all men.

Unfortunately, many businesses that are afraid to lose customers casually promote “Happy Holidays” within their billboards and ads. Some people go through their lives following the rest of the followers. If this evolving tradition continues without resentment and protest by individuals, we will hear our children’s children sing “Merry Holidays,” or “I’ll be Home for the Holiday,” or “The 12 Days of Holiday”. The new songs will be revised to, “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like a Holiday,” and “I’m Dreaming of a White Holiday.”

People dictate what is acceptable behavior for society, and unless we begin with ourselves, this relatively new tradition of “Happy Holidays” will be the direction of our future generation. It is sad and one I hope will go away.

So, if I greet you with a “Merry Christmas,” it is not meant to offend, but rather to respect and honor the true celebrant of the occasion and the reason for the season – Christ, the Lord.

Merry Christmas to you!

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