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I think I may have mentioned in another post that we'll be skipping Santa, but the more I think about it, we'll probably do some version of 'Santa lite'.... include gifts from Santa, talk about St. Nick, generosity, giving to others, etc, and allow for some excitement for full stockings and leaving cookies and carrots. That said, our focus will be Christ centered, and I have many many plans for traditions I want to bring into our family's holiday celebrations!
I heard on the radio station the other day (christian station) that one of the names for Santa actually translates into Christ child. I believe it is Kris kringle. I haven't done the research on it yet though so I may be getting it wrong. If I can verify it then starting next year we will go over different names for Santa and how the one translates into Christ Child. Along with that will be the generosity, giving to others, and that sort. We already read the Christmas story from the Bible every year. This is the first year my oldest (4yrs) has actually taken notice of Santa and asked who it is so next year will be when we tie the 2 together. However, we will still do the reindeer and elves and all that, just because it's fun.
I have always used the story of St. Nicholas. That he started out bringing gifts to the poor and orphans. Legends say that he would drop bags of gold down chimneys to help people and still remain anonymous....or he'd throw gold through the windows and it would land in stockings hanging out to dry. Stories of his generosity inspired people to give gifts this time of year. Reformers felt Nicholas was too closely tied to the Catholic Church so different countries or regions developed their own gift-giver. France had Pere Noel, England had Father Christmas, Dutch had Sinter Klass. Early Dutch settlers in NY brought Sinter Klass to the US where he became known as Santa Claus.
So, we do have Santa Claus and his reindeers here...I think it's fun. That being said...along with the spirit of giving....I think it is very important to keep Christmas Christ centered so we read stories, listen to music, and continue to talk about Christmas being about Christ....going to church also helps with that. I love how my daughter Oohs and Aahs over Nativity Scenes the same way she does with Christmas lights. She understands what Christmas is about....and as long as she does understand, doing Santa is fine with me.
Trisha--proud stay at home mommy and wife.
We teach Will that Santa is a person so happy about Jesus being born that he celebrates by giving gifts to boys and girls. When he is old enough to question if he is real, I can be more specific and explain to him the legend and how we each can be Santa if we feel the same. We talk about the story of Christ's Birth (in fact we just read it)
Thank you *Kiliki* for once again doing such amazing work on a siggie
I can do all things through Christ which Strengtheneth me. (Phil 4:13)
Several years ago, I have read a pamphlet about Santa and Jesus -- where Santa is an anagram of the name Satan and how it "substitute" Jesus in Christmas so it's a Christmas anti-Christ. However, we've grew up with it and I don't see anything wrong with it as long as you really know what is the meaning of Christmas and who is the center of it. Fortunately, my toddler knows Santa is only a Christmas icon and it won't be too much of a hassle explaining and handling about it to her since she's been attending to church with us.
I have the best job in the world the second time! -- and I'm lovin' it!
We don't do santa here. We will tell them when old enough about santa but I will not pretend that there is a Santa here on earth that knows good and bad and goes everywhere on Christmas and delivers presents. It will just confuse our kid/s when we try and teach that Christ knows good and bad and sees and knows everything. DH and I have both grew up with no santa and will keep it that way in our family.
We don't want to teach our kids that lies are okay and telling them that Santa brought gifts when mama and daddy really did is lying and when old enough will realize that we've been lying to them all those years and don't want to give them the wrong impression that mom and dad can lie but they can't.
Santa's just never been a big deal for us, we don't open presents Christmas day, so he's never come Christmas Eve. The kids thought the idea of him was fun when they were too little to know better. When we open our presents we call it a birthday party for Jesus. We get a few gifts, and sing happy birthday and have cake (an angel food cake, it's round (no beginning and no end) white frosting and red and green smarties and we talk about why it's decorated that way.
I don't think you're lying to your kids when you have Santa come, and I always feel like he gets way too much credit by being compared to Christ. My kids believed that unicorns and fairies existed...somewhere. There's something magical in their imaginations about these things. I think as long as Santa doesn't take too big of a role, you can have fun with it.