Friday, December 23, 2011

Is Santa a Christian Symbol?

By Susan Esther Barnes

One of my posts at TC Jewfolk prompted a writer at the Twin Cities Star Tribune to write an article titled "Is Santa a Christian symbol or a relgious holiday poacher?"

Author Susan Hogan cites some interesting theories about how Santa isn't really Christian. In the end, though, where the Santa figure came from isn't as relevant to my original article as what he symbolizes now.

Ask any American what holiday Santa symbolizes, and the answer you will get is, "Christmas." What does Santa do? He brings Christmas presents. And what is Christmas? Even though many secular people celebrate this holiday in a non-religious way, ask any Christian in any church what Christmas is about, and they will tell you it's a holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus.

So maybe, technically, Santa is a Christian symbol once removed, but he is inextricably tied up in Christmas, a major holiday celebrated by Christians, celebrating the birth of a person of enormous importance to their religion. He may not be about, as Susan Hogan writes, "ho-ho-holiness," but neither should we pretend he is unconnected to one of the two major Christian holidays.

1 comment:

  1. Isn't santa as we know him, a coca cola promo?

    btw "To Kiss a Mezuzah", that's such a cute name!