Skip to comments.German diocese creates ‘Santa-free zone’
Posted on 11/12/2009 11:55:23 AM PST by GonzoII
German diocese creates Santa-free zone
.- In an effort to encourage people to replace the commercialization of the Christmas season with a true devotion to Advent, Christmas and the true Santa Claus, several groups within the German Diocese of Speyer have initiated a Santa-free campaign.
The Federation of German Catholic Youth (BDKJ) of Speyer has partnered with other organizations to champion the cause of St. Nicholas of Myra, a friend and helper of children and those in trouble. St. Nicholas, whose feast is celebrated on December 6, represents the good side of man: selflessness, charity and selfless service, the campaign says.
St. Nicholas who was a bishop in Myra, (now Demre) in Turkey, is known for his generosity and for his love for children. One of the most famous stories of the generosity of St. Nicholas says that he threw bags of gold through an open window in the house of a poor man to serve as dowry for the mans daughters, who otherwise would have been sold into slavery. The gold is said to have landed in the familys shoes, which were drying near the fire. This is why children leave their shoes out by the door, or hang their stockings by the fireplace in the hopes of receiving a gift on the eve of his feast.
Katrin Naab, chairman of the Diocesan BDKJ says, St. Nicholas has nothing to do with the fictional advertising character with the red and white bobble hat.
The Santa-free zone campaign includes a variety of posters, pins, an e-card, fair trade chocolate and an open air Christmas market, as well as Masses for children, youth, and families on the feast of St. Nicholas itself.
When my kids asked me if Santa Claus was real, I told them about St. Nicholas.
Besides, St. Nicholas or the Christkindl (Baby Jesus) are the traditional gift-givers in German-speaking countries. No point in sacrificing ones home tradition for some ersatz commercial marketing symbol.
The True Saint Nicholas: Why He Matters to Christmas (Hardcover)
I approve, both in general and in this particular year. I’ve made an effort for many years to keep Christmas centered on Christ, and the “loot” has never been a big part of the day or an extravagance. This year in particular though, my total consumer spending for Christmas presents is $0 in honor of the Zero in our White House. I will maintain that level of consumerism until we have a real American in the White House (meaning someone who loves freedom - it has nothing to do with skin color), then return to a Christ-centered day but one with a little (and only a little) more materialism in the celebration.
Better SANTA then Mohammed and Ramadan....
I love Santa! There is nothing more wonderful to me than seeing the faces of the little ones on christmas morning as their wishes come true. There is no other time when one is so open to believing that wishes can come true. When i told my eldest about Santa, we used the story of the real Santa to explain it. How good it feels to give just for the sake of giving. He really understood it well.
My second child is figuring it out much faster than my first. I remember saying something fantastic when my oldest began questioning, I just wish I could remember what it was! LOL
The three balls on the book represent the three bags of gold he threw in the window. The three balls subsequently became the emblem of pawnbrokers during the Middle Ages - supposedly to show their generous nature!
The three children are from another story of St. Nicholas; it started with him baptizing three children, but over time, the three children in the barrel were portrayed as having been rescued by St. Nicholas from having been made in sausage!
I have a large cookie mold of St. Nicholas in his full Episcopal regalia and the three infants that I bought in Brussels.
There are many great St. Nicholas stories at http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=414 . Have you heard the one about him slapping Arias at the Council of Nicaea?
Works for me too!
See "The 'Claus' Clause" --from Fighting Irish Thomas
At that moment Basileos was whisked up into the air by St. Nicholas himself, and set down, safe and sound, in Myra, still holding the emir's golden cup and pitcher.
- that's one of the many miracles attributed to St. Nicholas in the Golden Legend, which makes for great reading. Sort of has special application these days.
I always felt uncomfortable lying to the kids about Santa. I tried to phrase it as, “What do you think happens?” Also, I told them about St. Nicholas and said that perhaps Santa Claus’s nickname came from the way he admired and tried to be as kind as the original, ancient St. Nicholas.
Finally, last week, my second child, now eight, asked me point-blank about Santa. When I told him that Daddy supplied the gifts, his response was really unexpected. He just beamed and said, “Wow! Daddy loves me soooo much!!!!” I also told him that his sister loves him a lot, too, since she had kept the secret for two years, so he could continue to enjoy Santa after she had found out. He gave her a big hug and a “thank-you.” When my DH got home that evening, he was greeted with a big, joyful hug from my son.
For a stay-at-home-mom, that was a great day “at the office”.
I agree. What bugs me even more is the whole choco bunny BS regarding Easter.
A religiously deracinated culture is not a culture at all.
Imagine going to Israel and announcing that passover was all about the happy blue bear that brings gummi bears —they’d look at you like a space alien.
When they came for the easter bunny I said nothing because I was not an easter bunny, and when they came for Santa I said nothing because I was not Santa Claus.....