Minister's Message

CONTACT: Rev. Chris Shorow 405.341.3544

Coming soon to a theater near you is a holiday film that may be worth seeing. “The Man Who Invented Christmas” is the story of Charles Dickens and the writing of “A Christmas Carol,” published in 1843. Of course, we are all too familiar with the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and his ghostly visitors. But the book from which the movie is based, authored by Les Standiford, tells much more of the story.

It seems many of our Christmas customs come from this book as well. For instance, having Scrooge purchase a Christmas turkey for Bob Cratchit and his family, rather than the traditional Christmas goose, not only destroyed the goose-raising industry in England, but established the turkey as the preferred dish for our major holidays. But images of Scrooge, Tiny Tim—even Bah, Humbug!—dominate our Christmas world. Other than Clement Moore’s 1823 poem, “The Night Before Christmas,” which introduced us to a Santa Claus that was rotund, wore a red suit and flew to our houses to deliver gifts to deserving boys and girls, few cultural pieces have contributed as much to our celebration of Christmas than “A Christmas Carol.”

And in a miracle of timing, our Advent theme for this Christmas is “A Christmas Carol.” We will be exploring the past, present and future of our own Christmas celebrations and what Christ’s birth means for us. We will also be looking at how our culture has come to define Christmas as much as our faith stories. What aspects of our cultural celebration of Christmas and all of the frenzy of commercialism it brings are worth recognizing and which are best left out? After all, the simple story of Jesus and his birth in a humble manger is what this holiday is ultimately about. We have been given the greatest gift, in a Savior that comes to us as a child.

So, if you get a chance to see the movie this season, it might be worth it. Remember, this is not a movie review—it hasn’t been released yet. The trailer looks good, but don’t blame me if it is not a good movie! And during our worship we will be seeing and hearing about scenes from “A Christmas Carol” itself. It also might be worth reading again, or seeing one of the movie adaptations. Remember, there is time to turn from “Bah, Humbug” to “Merry Christmas, everyone!”