December 25th, 2012

Jesus, Bible

Ascension Lutheran Church





I have a new path. Its the 2-mile walk to my grandfather-in-law's new assisted living facility now that we've all moved to Wichita. It takes me half-an-hour to walk there. Along the way I pass the Ascension Lutheran Chruch (annotated by a cross on the map) where signs surrounding the area proclaim, "PUT CHRIST BACK IN "CHRISTMAS!" While we all make assumptions, it is especially noticeable when a global entity makes such a glaring error about itself. It sucks the faith right out of you when you learn that a leader of an ideology doesn't understand its own ideological history.

Long answer: One of the oldest Christograms is the Chi-Rho or Labarum. It consists of the superimposed Greek letters chi (Χ) and rho (Ρ), which are the first two letters of Christ in Greek. Technically, the word labarum is Latin for a type of vexillum, a military standard with a flag hanging from a horizontal crossbar. A Chi-Rho Christogram was added to the flag by the Emperor Constantine I in the late Roman period. Therefore Christogram and labarum were not originally synonyms. The most commonly encountered Christogram in English-speaking countries in modern times is the X (or more accurately, Greek letter chi) in the abbreviation Xmas (for "Christmas"), which represents the first letter of the word Christ. (Lifted directly from Wikipedia, though there are many sources of this information.)

Short answer: The "X" in "XMAS" stands for Christ. Ergo, "XMAS" = "CHRISTMAS"

So despite the fact that every scholar of Christianity is aware of the pagan origin of Christmas, Christ ironically remains in Xmas. Now, let the butthurt stop, and may you have a very Merry Christmas, or whichever pagan yule festive you choose celebrate during Winter Solstice :)