The Common Good

Results for Christmas

Christmas Found On a Trailways Bus
Originally Posted: 12/30/2014 - 5:46pm | Type: Press

December 25, 2014 Sojo in the News Kelley Jon Donham ...

White Christmas, Black Christmas
Originally Posted: 12/30/2014 - 5:34pm | Type: Press

December 22, 2014 Sojo in the News Robert P. Jones ...

The Subversive Peace of Christmas
Originally Posted: 12/24/2014 - 10:45am | Type: Blog

Jesus was born, he was killed, and he rose again to subvert the whole theological and political system of violence with God’s nonviolent love. He reveals the absurdity of believing that the means of violence c ...

Campfires of Hope
Originally Posted: 12/23/2014 - 2:29pm | Type: Blog

Many events this year feel like they have sucked the hope right out of us. And yet, even in the midst of terrible events and stories, the possibilities of hope still exist depending on what we decide to do for ...

Your Story Stinks … Oh, and Peace on Earth
Originally Posted: 12/23/2014 - 11:56am | Type: Blog

At this time of year, we hear verses and songs about peace on Earth. With so much war and acrimony in every nook of the world and cyberspace, this notion of peace can sound pretty absurd. ...

All I Want for Christmas Is Uncertainty
Originally Posted: 12/23/2014 - 11:31am | Type: Blog

I am longing for the gift of uncertainty, a type of profound mystery that welcomes questions, a faith that requires a leap of faith to sustain. Have you ever been enamored by a ch ...

The Christmas Truce: A Lesson from 100 Years Ago
Originally Posted: 12/23/2014 - 10:42am | Type: Blog

One hundred years ago, during the First World War, the Christmas truce took place between British, German, and French soldiers in the trenches on the Western Front. On Christmas Eve 1914, soldiers from opposin ...

Dreaming of God With Us
Originally Posted: 12/22/2014 - 10:53am | Type: Blog

I want to talk about Joseph’s two decisions. I want to talk about angels. I want to talk about dreams. And I want to talk about how we might today dream that God is with us (Emmanuel). ...

Weekly Wrap 12.19.14: The 10 Best Stories You Missed This Week
Originally Posted: 12/19/2014 - 5:24pm | Type: Blog

1. Hero mom calls into C-SPAN to berate her arguing pundit sons Whether or not your family expects heated political debate over the holidays, you''ll appreciate the way this mom quiets her sons. ...

The Birth of Jesus Is Not a Sweet Story
Originally Posted: 12/17/2014 - 11:43am | Type: Blog

As told by Luke and Matthew, the birth of Jesus isn’t a sweet story. It is God intervening in human depravity and sorrow, offering hope to the hopeless, light to those walking in darkness. ...

Sierra Leone Bans Christmas, New Year’s Celebrations to Prevent Spread of Ebola
Originally Posted: 12/15/2014 - 3:29pm | Type: Blog

The government of Sierra Leone banned public Christmas and New Year’s celebrations because they may exacerbate efforts to eradicate the Ebola virus. The government of Sierra Leon ...

Why Are Manger Scenes So Weird?
Originally Posted: 12/15/2014 - 1:01pm | Type: Blog

We’ve left out all the messy parts. The oh-my-God-what-now parts. The I’m-screaming-as-loud-as-I-can-because-it-really-hurts parts. The oh-no-I’ve-stepped-in-the-animal-droppings parts. The real parts. And tha ...

Bright Morning Star A-Rising
Originally Posted: 12/15/2014 - 2:56pm | Type: Magazine Article

Reta Halteman Finger Reflections of the Revised Common Lectionary, Cycle B.  IF WE FOLLOWED the church calend ...

It's Time Again: Depression and the Holidays
Originally Posted: 11/24/2014 - 11:35am | Type: Blog

. We don’t want anybody to say, “You’ll get over it,” or “Other people have many more reasons to be depressed than you.” So on top of feeling depressed, we feel guilty about being depressed. The prophet Isaia ...

Can Commerce and Religion Go Their Separate Ways This Christmas?
Originally Posted: 11/19/2014 - 12:58pm | Type: Blog

Maybe it’s good that commerce has declared its independence from religion and decorum. That clears the way for faith to have its parallel season — not in competition with commerce, but as the deeper reality th ...

When Decemberism Crucifies Christmas
Originally Posted: 11/18/2014 - 11:32am | Type: Blog

One of the dominant dogmas of the season seems to be both loud and clear: Our value as human beings is often dictated by our capacity to contribute toward economic growth. This is what happens when Decemberism ...

51.
Originally Posted: 11/12/2014 - 10:35am | Type: Magazine Article

Marilyn Seven Wizards! Caspar! Melchior! Balthasar! Why fly straight to Fox Herod? Through Unbounded night—! Bringing only news Ripe for bloodletting. How black a star You foll ...

To the Millennia and Beyond!
Originally Posted: 11/27/2014 - 1:19pm | Type: Magazine Article

Reta Halteman Finger Reflections on the Revised Common Lectionary, Cycle B.  I CONFESS THAT I DO NOT often us ...

God's Dangerous Promises
Originally Posted: 02/17/2014 - 10:30am | Type: Magazine Article

Joy J. Moore Reflections on the Revised Common Lectionary, Cycle A INVITATIONS COME. Yet an expressed desire ...

Let the Real War on Christmas Begin!
Originally Posted: 12/26/2013 - 11:04am | Type: Blog

The real war on Christmas begins on Dec. 26 and it is waged in the most pernicious way possible: By ignoring the Christmas season altogether. And we will be completely unaware that we are participating in the ...

Five Ways to De-Commercialize Christmas
Originally Posted: 12/24/2013 - 12:00pm | Type: Blog

We’ve created a Christmas monster: a grotesque assemblage of pagan, Christian and capitalist symbolism into something that resembles something we’re both attracted to and repulsed by at the same time. ...

Muslim Christmas celebrations gain a toehold
Originally Posted: 12/24/2013 - 11:26am | Type: Blog

A growing number of American Muslims celebrate Christmas, or at least partake in some ways, even if they don’t decorate their homes with trees and a light show. Indeed, many Muslim families have created their ...

Our War on Christmas
Originally Posted: 12/24/2013 - 10:12am | Type: Blog

To those who say that Christmas is all about peace on earth, a quick look at the second chapter of Matthew and the largely overlooked story of King Herod reminds us that this peace comes at a price. For it is ...

A Tale of Two Christmases
Originally Posted: 12/23/2013 - 1:08pm | Type: Blog

There is one Christmas as celebrated by orthodox Christians in which we rejoice in the birth of Jesus into a manger, eventually coming to signify and proclaim the reconciliation of heaven, earth, and nations, ...

Ten Things You Can't Do at Christmas While Following Jesus
Originally Posted: 12/23/2013 - 11:38pm | Type: Blog

Christmas is what we make of it. For Christians, however, there are some very specific things you can’t do if you want to actually honor and follow the person we celebrate this season. ...

On Scripture: The Massacre of the Innocents and the Soul of the Warrior (Matthew 2:13–23)
Originally Posted: 12/23/2013 - 11:50am | Type: Blog

Throughout human history, warriors have faced a wide variety of difficult circumstances, often having to weigh life and death decisions at a moment’s notice. While Herod’s gruesome command should in no way be ...

The Christmas Wars Are Over, And Christmas Won
Originally Posted: 12/20/2013 - 4:18pm | Type: Blog

If there is indeed a “War on Christmas,” those on the anti-Christmas side of the war have lost — big time. If there is indeed a “War on Christmas,” those on the anti-Christmas sid ...

The Elf on the Shelf Can Stay
Originally Posted: 12/20/2013 - 11:30am | Type: Blog

While some claim that the Elf on the Shelf encourages good behavior, it feels to me like this whole Santa/Elf myth manipulates good behavior. Yet, I’m beginning to admit that the Elf brings a sense of joy and ...

When Christmas Gets Real
Originally Posted: 12/19/2013 - 12:10pm | Type: Blog

Examining the Christmas story in this realistic light, it seems not a story that isolates, but a story for the isolated. Our stories are not picturesque or sanitized or even comfortable. And yet, ours are the ...

Christmas in America: Belief in the Virgin Birth and Visits from Santa
Originally Posted: 12/18/2013 - 2:44pm | Type: Blog

Nearly one in three Americans, including many with no little children at home and those with no religious identity, say they pretend Santa will visit their house on Christmas Eve. ...

Is It Possible to Celebrate Christmas and the Birth of Jesus on the Same Day?
Originally Posted: 12/18/2013 - 11:40am | Type: Blog

Despite our best efforts, Christmas is associated with Santa Claus. Now, if it were the historical “Santa Claus” who gave away his best to save the lives of some children, that’d be awesome. But, no, this is t ...

Christmas Is a Commercial Holiday, Not a Sacred Holy Day, for Many
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 4:57pm | Type: Blog

Nine in 10 Americans will celebrate Christmas this year, but a new poll shows that increasing numbers see the holiday as more tinsel than gospel truth. Nine in 10 Americans will c ...

Remembering Our True Source of Joy
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 2:52pm | Type: Blog

Amidst the sadness and injustice of the world, we need to remember that in all things, Jesus is our source of joy. As we prepare for the coming of Christ, the third Sunday of adve ...

Theology, Culture, And Miscellany
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 11:35am | Type: Press

December 14, 2013 Sojo in the News Tumbling Theology ...

Give Like God -- or More Like Santa?
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 10:46am | Type: Blog

Giving is an attitude, a spirit. There’s never any judgment about who is worthy and who is not. This is how God gives to us. So, how do we give? Have you ever given someone a gif ...

On Scripture: #firstcenturyproblems (Matthew 1:18-25)
Originally Posted: 12/16/2013 - 11:22am | Type: Blog

As Matthew 1:18-25 demonstrates, today’s poor are more likely to be struggling with #firstcenturyproblems than they are #firstworldproblems, and, in this, they find solidarity with Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. ...

New and Improved Christmas Hymns
Originally Posted: 12/13/2013 - 10:56am | Type: Blog

As a public service, I have written historically accurate versions of three of the most beloved holiday hymns. Without personally endorsing any of the theology below, I also offer some alternatives to those wh ...

The Miracle of Christmas Bread
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 10:55am | Type: Magazine Article

Rose Marie Berger "Food brings people together." THURSDAY NIGHT is baking night at Panadería El Lat ...

Advocacy From the Manger and Environmental Justice
Originally Posted: 12/12/2013 - 2:49pm | Type: Blog

I truly believe that Jesus’s focus on the “least of these” is a model for advocacy, especially for the environmental justice movement. This past Sunday, I had the opportunity to w ...

Why My Family Says 'No' to the Santa Claus Myth
Originally Posted: 12/12/2013 - 11:01am | Type: Blog

We have chosen to say “no” to Santa based on our faith, our understanding of social psychology, and commitment to economic justice. A few weeks ago a well-meaning adult asked my y ...

Shepherds
Originally Posted: 12/17/2013 - 10:55am | Type: Magazine Article

Harry C. Kiely The voices are singing, “All will be well, All will be well.” Night. The sheep huddled agains ...

Your Christmas Card Is False Advertising (Unless It Speaks of Sedition)
Originally Posted: 12/11/2013 - 11:02am | Type: Blog

Christmas cards may not fully be able to convey is the magnitude of Christ’s birth. Maybe the magnitude of this truly cataclysmic event is better depicted with words. And maybe there are no greater words then ...

Hope and Despair
Originally Posted: 12/10/2013 - 5:09pm | Type: Blog

As we patiently anticipate the light of Christ entering anew this Advent season, we must cling steadfastly to the hope we profess. For our help comes from the Lord, who ensures that hope ultimately triumphs ov ...

How Much of Christ Can We Stand in Christmas?
Originally Posted: 12/10/2013 - 2:17pm | Type: Blog

It’s time for Christ in Christmas. Time for new life, time for hope, time for the faithful to say yes to God. Time for peace, not war. Time for repentance, not comfort at any cost. Time for justice and mercy a ...

I Am Not A Good Christian
Originally Posted: 12/10/2013 - 2:18pm | Type: Blog

What makes one a good person? Additionally, what makes one a good Christian? I have been spending some time wondering about this as news of Mandela’s death has been making it’s way across the planet. Was he a ...

God, Santa, Gifts and a Story for Preschoolers
Originally Posted: 12/09/2013 - 5:55pm | Type: Blog

Santa as a model to imitate: He gives gifts for the joy of it and so should we. When I was 4 and 5 years old, my parents hung our stockings up at the beginning of Advent. Each mor ...

Christmas Needs a New Tagline
Originally Posted: 12/06/2013 - 2:24pm | Type: Blog

Unfortunately, we have yet to find those few, powerful words to create a tagline worthy of Christmas, a tagline that will connect “consumers” with the promise of Christmas. This is not to say we shouldn’t try. ...

What Do We Mean By 'Putting Christ Back in Christmas'?
Originally Posted: 12/05/2013 - 1:48pm | Type: Blog

As a person who would say that Jesus is the most important thing in my life, who has devoted my life to the service of God’s Kingdom, and spends all of my waking moments trying be faithful to that devotion, I ...

A New Look at Giving Tuesday: More Give to Religion Than Realize It
Originally Posted: 12/03/2013 - 7:20pm | Type: Blog

This is Giving Tuesday, when nonprofits of every stripe hope to attract some of the billions of dollars to be spent during the Hanukkah and Christmas season. This is  Giving Tues ...

There's a Difference Between Expectancy and Expectation
Originally Posted: 12/02/2013 - 6:40pm | Type: Blog

We had an image in our mind of what Christmas was going to be and, come hell or high water, it would come to pass. We’d manufacture the feelings we searched for by setting up the perfect scene, and by making s ...