Keeping the Mass in Christmas

By Dave, the WM

"Merry Christmas" gives the political correctness crowd lots to write about, but I think they've all missed the boat on this. We should all be campaigning to preserve and promote the real reason for the season. We need to keep the Mass in Christmas!

From Wikipedia:

The word "Christmas" originated as a contraction of "Christ's mass." It is derived from the Middle English Christemasse and Old English Cristes mæsse, a phrase first recorded in 1038. In early Greek versions of the New Testament, the letter Χ (chi), is the first letter of Christ. Since the mid-sixteenth century Χ, or the similar Roman letter X, was used as an abbreviation for Christ. Hence, "Xmas" is often used as an abbreviation for Christmas.

So, having the X in Xmas is still keeping Christ in the holiday, but people have forgotten the real reason for Christmas – celebrating the Mass!

Continuing from Wikipedia:

The identification of the birth date of Christ did not at first inspire feasting or celebration. Tertullian does not mention it as a major feast day in the Church of Roman Africa. In 245, the theologian Origen denounced the idea of celebrating Christ's birthday "as if he were a king pharaoh." He contended that . only sinners, not saints, celebrated their birthdays.

The earliest reference to the celebration of Christmas is in the Chronography of 354, an illuminated manuscript compiled in Rome in 354

Christmas was promoted in the east as part of the revival of Catholicism following the death of the pro-Arian Emperor Valens at the Battle of Adrianople in 378. The feast was introduced to Constantinople in 379, to Antioch in about 380, and to Alexandria in about 430. Christmas was especially controversial in 4th century Constantinople, being the "fortress of Arianism," as Edward Gibbon described it. The feast disappeared after Gregory of Nazianzus resigned as bishop in 381, although it was reintroduced by John Chrysostom in about 400.[1]

So, Christmas as we know it is entirely a Roman Catholic invention and tradition. Therefore, the most important aspect of this holiday is the Mass. Celebrating the birth of Jesus was never considered important or even appropriate during the first few centuries of Christianity. The Council of Nicaea declared at least half of Christendom to be heretical, and ushered in a wondrous 1,000-year reign of ignorance, terror. and horror under the beatific reign of true Christianity: Roman Catholicism.

Therefore, in grateful appreciation to Holy Roman Catholicism for uniting the world in joy during this merry time of year, I am suggesting a new political correctness campaign: Keep the MASS in Christmas!

What do you say?


Anonymous said...

I'm sure the Catholics are happy to keep that in the word. But when the protestants hear something like this, it may not make them happy. But then, nothing makes them happy except dying and going to heaven.

Anonymous said...

The old Dan Brown mistake of linking Nicea and the formation of the NT canon does not belong in a post that tries to set the historical record straight.

webmdave said...


If you want a more comprehensive coverage of how the canon came to be, then just click on THIS LINK.

The point here is that the real meaning of Christmas is eating magic Jesus cookies.

Get it?

Anonymous said...

According to the Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar, Theophany, Jan 6, is a more significant feast than Christmas. Theophany means the 'revealing of God', and celebrates the Jesus' baptism and the accompanying voice from heaven.

I've read that at one time this was a catch-all feast, covering all the beginning events in the Gospels, and that is only around the time of Chrysostom that the birth was split off to Dec25. In the Roman church Jan 6 is about the magi and how they fooled Herod - and has a popular April Fools quality.

The liturgical churches still have an Advent Fast before Christmas, modelled after Lent before Easter (Pascha). In the middle of this fast is St Nicholas day, Dec6, with some gift giving.

So there are many ways in which modern post 'Christmas Carol' celebrations differ from more traditional ones.

Anonymous said...

Bumper Sticker Wisdom:

The tilt of the Earth's axis is the reason for the season

Anonymous said...

"According to the Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar, Theophany, Jan 6, is a more significant feast than Christmas. Theophany means the 'revealing of God', and celebrates the Jesus' baptism and the accompanying voice from heaven."

Anonymous, please get your facts straight. January 6th, the 12th day after Xmas is called the feast of the Epiphany. This was supposedly when the wise men came and brought gifts to the baby Jesus. It is also the beginning of the Mardi Gras season. The only difference between the Roman Catholic and Orthodox church is the celebration of easter.

Anonymous said...

"According to the Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar, Theophany, Jan 6, is a more significant feast than Christmas. "

Actually, it doesn't matter because it is all a bunch of superstitious mumbo-jumbo anyways and about as relevant to real life as astrology, regardless of who says what.

Anonymous said...

"The only difference between the Roman Catholic and Orthodox church is the celebration of easter."

and the similarities begin with the fact that they are equally delusional.

Aspentroll said...

On the 25th of December, just let me be with good friends and family. There should be lots of turkey,dressing and a mince meat pie. Let there peace and good will to all men (and women, too).
Oh yeah, don't bother me with all the religious crap because to me it has no significance.

Happy Holidays to all you hell bound sinners.

Anonymous said...

Where did the tradition of giving presents come from?

All I want for christmas is my two front teeth.

Anonymous said...

And the three wise men, they were so wise and we forgot to mention their names.

I had three wise men come to my house, how did I know they were wise?....Well, they said they were wise, so they must have been.

How to recognize wise men:

They travel in three's
They travel in the desert
They follow stars
They smell like camel shit
They carry presents, (incense, mirth)
They have no names
They say they are wise
They worship kings
They don't hang around very long

Anonymous said...

"The point here is that the real meaning of Christmas is eating magic Jesus cookies."

Yeah BUT!
They have been blessed by his highness, the pope :-)

Anonymous said...

Mass is not just a Catholic term, Lutheran and 'high mass' Churches exist.

Your argument is rather like saying Christians shouldn't have churches because it was the Catholic church that first made the innovation of having gatherings in a designated building.
We both believe Christ came into the world, so we both (and the Orthodox Church) can celebrate it.

"The Council of Nicaea hacked together the New Testament,"

The council of Nicaea had nothing to do with the canon.

"declared at least half of Christendom to be heretical"

What Arians? They werent even 0.05% of Christianity.

webmdave said...

You're right, Don. I was thinking of the Council of Carthage, but even then, no one could completely agree on the canon of the New Testament.

I removed that quote.

However, I can't imagine where you got your stats for how many Arians were out there. How many human beings does 5% represent, btw?

From Wikipedia:

Arius and his followers had great influence in the schools of Alexandria — counterparts to modern universities or seminaries — their theological views spread, especially in the eastern Mediterranean. By 325, the controversy had become significant enough that the Emperor Constantine called an assembly of bishops, the First Council of Nicaea, which condemned Arius' doctrine and formulated the Original Nicene Creed. The Nicene Creed's central term, used to describe the relationship between the Father and the Son, is Homoousios, or Consubstantiality, meaning "of the same substance" or "of one being". (The Athanasian Creed is less often used but is a more overtly anti-Arian statement on the Trinity.)

Constantine exiled those who refused to accept the Nicean creed — Arius himself, the deacon Euzoios, and the Libyan bishops Theonas of Marmarica and Secundus of Ptolemais — and also the bishops who signed the creed but refused to join in condemnation of Arius, Eusebius of Nicomedia and Theognis of Nicaea. The Emperor also ordered all copies of the Thalia, the book in which Arius had expressed his teachings, to be burned.

Anonymous said...

Hey, homey, their names were:
Gaspar, Melchior and Balthasar.

Gaspar... Isn't that a French name?

Oliver Cromwell tried to outlaw Xmas celebrations, too, but I think his reasons were more because he was a joyless, tight-assed Mo-Fo than matters of Theology.

Now let us partake of the Blessed Spiral-Sliced Ham and REAL Egg Nogg....

Anonymous said...

As to the names of the "three wise men" or "magi" or "kings of the east," they are NOT given anywhere in the gospels. Their names, as well as the idea that one of them was Black, were later "medievel accretions" to the tradition. An awful lot of what Christians believe nowadays in fact, dates back no further than the Middle Ages.

Anonymous said...

4th century Christian history was anything but simple. The wiki article on the Arian controversy lists 40 councils in that century that dealt in one way or other with the issue. Arius's main opponent, Athanasius, was exiled by Constantine. Constantine was not baptized until he was dying, and then by Eusebius of Nicomedia (not the historian), who had Arian leanings.

Some of the Germanic kingdoms, including the Vandals, were dominantly Arian (into the 7th century).

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