Non Catholic Christians and Christmas services


#1

What will they be like at your church? If you consider yourself Christian, but do not celebrate Christmas, why don’t you? As a non Christian who is nearly drowned in the secular trappings of Christmas and a bit of the religious, I’m curious.


#2

We have weekly Advent services and a community meal on Wednesday evenings, and Holy Communion on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.


#3

I am confused by your question. A non-Catholic and/or non-Christian are always welcomed to come to Mass. The only so called Christians that don’t celebrate Christmas would be Seventh Day Adventists. I hope I understood your question correctly
peace


#4

I’ve gone back and forth on this a bit. I grew up in a home that celebrated Christmas, but later attended a Reformed Baptist church that, due to the regulative prinicple of worship, did not recognize Christmas as a legitimate holiday at church, though they did not forbid families from pursuing Christmas activities in their homes. After leaving the Baptist church, I once again found myself in congregations that celebrated Christmas. This is one of those issues that I just don’t find terribly important one way or the other in terms of doctrine (though maybe I should!).

For hundreds of years, many Christians of the Reformed stripe did not celebrate Christmas, and doing so even privately could be cause for church discipline. The link below offers a brief yet thorough treatment of why celebrating Christmas is wrong from a Reformed perspective.
reformedonline.com/view/reformedonline/xmas.htm#C3S5


#5

I celebrate both Christmas and Chanukah. I light the Advent wreath every Sunday of Advent, and light my menorah during Chanukah. I don’t have an Essene community nearby, but may attend a Swedenborgian church in the area. But generally, my celebration/observance is a private affair.

Jala


#6

My inlaws are baptists and Apostolic. neither holds church services on Christmas. They decided it would give them more time to spend with their families! No need to worship God and give thanks for our savior’s birth. Just hang out with the fam…:smiley:


#7

This year our church is having the children's program during Sunday services on the 23rd with a dinner following it and then a song service Christmas Eve. My pastor has three congregations that spans about 90 miles between the two outlying churches, so only one has a Christmas Day service while the other two will have afternoon/evening Christmas Eve services.


#8

[quote="robwar, post:3, topic:308040"]
The only so called Christians that don't celebrate Christmas would be Seventh Day Adventists. I hope I understood your question correctly
peace

[/quote]

To be fair to the Adventists, they do celebrate Christmas. Their "prophetess" Ellen G White actually chastised some of the founding members who objected to a "popish" holiday. In one of her books she even recommends setting up Christmas trees in the church building.

I know this because I had an Adventist classmate whose father was the local SDA pastor. The pastor and his family were ardently pro-Christmas, but some holier-than-thou types in the congregation tried to turn it into a "who's saved?" contest.

Does anyone know if the restrictions on Christmas were found throughout the Reformed world, or just in the English-/ Scots-speaking side? I know the Britannic Reformed (Scottish Presbyterians, English Puritans, etc) tended to be a little more 'puritanical' in a lot of things than their continental brethren. For instance, Scots and English were routinely scandalized in the 17th century to find Dutch Reformed doing business on the sabbath.


#9

Actually there are other Christian groups that don’t celebrate Christmas aside from the Jehovas witnesses who have no holidays at all,

I was raised in the churches of Christ who don’t celebrate Christmas becuase the bible does not demand it’s observance. That is the accapella southern c of C.

I remember when I was small no Protestants celebrated Christmas on Christmas itself, they would have services the Sunday before.

Except Lutherans and Episcopalians.


#10

While I have not been blessed with the opportunity to attend one myself yet (I'm always away visiting family during this time of year), there are some clips of Coptic Nativity services on Youtube, so they can give you (and me) a sense of what it's like: youtube.com/watch?v=29CSpetysTQ

As you can hear and see, it's quite a spirited affair! Incidentally, those are the fastest versions of "Pijen misi" and "Apenchois" (1:13 and following) that I've ever heard. Cymbal-guy needs to pace himself, I think. You're going to be there for hours, Deacon Rusheverything. :rolleyes:


#11

[quote="hs_hopeful, post:1, topic:308040"]
What will they be like at your church? If you consider yourself Christian, but do not celebrate Christmas, why don't you? As a non Christian who is nearly drowned in the secular trappings of Christmas and a bit of the religious, I'm curious.

[/quote]

At my old church, when they had a Christmas Eve service, we would go at around 7:00 PM. There would be a period of Christmas caroling, the pastor would give a short sermon, and finally, there would be communion.

Some church services for Christmas can be rather splendid. It's nice to be able to participate especially as a refuge from, as you refer to it, "the secular trappings of Christmas."


#12

Christmas Eve: A Christmas Pageant and Eucharist at 4:00 and Choral Eucharist at 9:00 (we have a lot of older parishioners and they like to be home by 11:00). Christmas Day Holy Eucharist at 10:00.

All traditional Anglican with traditional language. The usual carols, sung reverently.

[quote="hs_hopeful, post:1, topic:308040"]
What will they be like at your church? If you consider yourself Christian, but do not celebrate Christmas, why don't you? As a non Christian who is nearly drowned in the secular trappings of Christmas and a bit of the religious, I'm curious.

[/quote]


#13

Christmas isn't usually part of the Quaker tradition...oh...probably the majority of Friends celebrate Xmas....but it is considered just another day....nothing sacred about the day in and of itself that is not found in any other day.

Some Friends will have a Xmas service OR will just invite those Friends who wish to celebrate Xmas in a religious setting find another tradition they would be comfortable with.

"Unless Christ be born daily in our lives Christmas is just another day...but if He is born in our hearts daily, each day is Christmas." A close facimile of Quaker thought and quote.


#14

[quote="Publisher, post:13, topic:308040"]
Christmas isn't usually part of the Quaker tradition...oh...probably the majority of Friends celebrate Xmas....but it is considered just another day....nothing sacred about the day in and of itself that is not found in any other day.

Some Friends will have a Xmas service OR will just invite those Friends who wish to celebrate Xmas in a religious setting find another tradition they would be comfortable with.

"Unless Christ be born daily in our lives Christmas is just another day...but if He is born in our hearts daily, each day is Christmas." A close facimile of Quaker thought and quote.

[/quote]

Just curious. Do you celebrate birthdays as a general rule? If so, why would you not want to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior? The angels in heaven celebrated his birth, singing "Glory to God in the highest".

I would agree wholeheartedly with your Quaker quote, but that does not mean that I should not recognize in a very speacial way the day that God became man and dwelt among us.


#15

Wednesday evening Advent service, and two communion services Christmas Eve. We’re a small parish so the late one essentially serves as our Christmas day service.

Jon


#16

Small rural CofE parish:

Advent 4

am: Eucharist
pm: Nine Lessons and Carols

Christmas Eve

4pm Children's Christingle Service
11pm Midnight Mass & Blessing of the Crib

Christmas Day

am: Eucharist


#17

[quote="SteveVH, post:14, topic:308040"]
Just curious. Do you celebrate birthdays as a general rule? If so, why would you not want to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior? The angels in heaven celebrated his birth, singing "Glory to God in the highest".

I would agree wholeheartedly with your Quaker quote, but that does not mean that I should not recognize in a very speacial way the day that God became man and dwelt among us.

[/quote]

We are free to celebrate birthdays if we choose.....but if each day IS Christmas as He is born anew in our heart...Christmas is celebrated every day of the year.....every day is holy...every day is special...every day is the opportunity to proclaim "Glory to God in the highest"...not just one day a year.


#18

[quote="Publisher, post:17, topic:308040"]
We are free to celebrate birthdays if we choose.....but if each day IS Christmas as He is born anew in our heart...Christmas is celebrated every day of the year.....every day is holy...every day is special...every day is the opportunity to proclaim "Glory to God in the highest"...not just one day a year.

[/quote]

That is very simular to the church of Christ philosophy. They claim to celebrate everything at the same time all of the time. But in my experience that really lead to celebrating nothing all of the time. The human mind can only do so many things at once.

Once in a while Christmas would fall on a sunday or wednesday. It was just totally depressing to arrive at a church (building in coC speech) and see four bare walls and Chrismas not even mentioned.

Not even poinsettia on the "Lord's Supper table".


#19

Our Christmas Cantata is this Sunday morning, with the children's Cantata that evening. After the evening service we'll have an informal get together with finger foods.

No evening or Wed services the Sunday before Christmas or the one before New Years.
We will have a drop in Communion Christmas Eve from 5-7pm.


#20

[quote="robwar, post:3, topic:308040"]
I am confused by your question. A non-Catholic and/or non-Christian are always welcomed to come to Mass. The only so called Christians that don't celebrate Christmas would be Seventh Day Adventists. I hope I understood your question correctly
peace

[/quote]

My JW co workers inform me that they never celebrate Christmas because it is a 'Pagan holiday.'


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