White Christmas? We would love to have one, but we hope it doesn’t happen until after everyone gets to their holiday destination.
Blue Christmas? We wouldn’t wish it on anyone (see the letter to the editor below) — unless, of course, they can sing like Elvis.
But a hectic Christmas? Probably so. We can all expect some chaos at this time of year and we at U.S. 1 are going to do our best to make our operation a little less hectic. We are printing our final edition of the first decade of the new millennium on Tuesday, December 22, instead of Wednesday, December 23. And our office will be closed Thursday, December 24.
We will reopen on Monday, December 28. But after that we will stay out of your hair for the entire period between Christmas and New Year’s and return with our annual Survival Guide issue on Wednesday, January 6.
To the Editor:
Join the Crowd
I’m troubled by “Blue Christmas” worship. The practice started because, understandably, some people find it difficult to share in the joy of the holiday season. Their lives are a mess (divorce, death, illness, etc). So some institutions thought that this group of people would benefit from a separate worship service, where similarly struggling folks could gather without the refrains of “Joy to the World.”
I’m troubled because this practice seems to be in response to our culture’s appreciation of Christmas. The church’s story, however, is not the reassuring bliss of, “God is in his heavens, and all is right with the world.” Rather the joy of the Feast of the Nativity is that God is with us in our mess.
Blue Christmas segregates people and experiences into false categories: Worship with sad people when you are sad and joyful people when you are joyful. In reality there is no place you can go where life is not messed up. Messed up is the only way that life is found. Blue Christmas also unduly harms the gift of diversity in Christian community. Christian worship is less than it is meant to be when those present aren’t connected to the messiness of life — theirs and others.
This Christmas don’t stay away if you are blue. Instead gather with others to hear about the God that doesn’t protect us from the messes of life (unplanned pregnancy, homelessness, governmental corruption — elements of the first Christmas) but in the very messiness of life is with us — Emmanuel!
Pastor, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 177 Princeton-Hightstown Road