Book review - Christmas Lost and Christmas Regained
Christmas is an occasion for transformation
Few of us realise that there was a period of two hundred years – between the times of Oliver Cromwell and Charles Dickens – when Christmas was not celebrated in English-speaking countries. For some of that time Christmas was actually banned and it was not until the middle 1850s that Christmas celebrations as we know them today became common place.
Robert Faser is a retired Uniting Church minister now living in Hobart and this little book is a collection of material based on his doctoral study on the theme of Christmas as ‘a season of opportunity’. Opportunity for Christians to celebrate the birth of a Saviour, and opportunity to share this news with the wider community.
In the gospels we read that Christmas was not just for the ‘religious’. There are Persian scholars, shepherds, innkeepers – ordinary, not necessarily religious, people.
Christmas is also an occasion for transformation and for becoming aware of how closely God is connected to our humanity. Think of the number of Christmas stories such as The Grinch and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, in which Christmas has the power to transform the meanest of people into generous, open, happier beings.
There is much thoughtful and stimulating material in this little green book.