Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas Greetings

RESOLUTION (H. Res. 847}

Recognizing the importance of Christmas and the Christian faith.

Whereas Christmas, a holiday of great significance to Americans and many other cultures and nationalities, is celebrated annually by Christians throughout the United States and the world;

Whereas there are approximately 225,000,000 Christians in the United States, making Christianity the religion of over three-fourths of the American population;

Whereas there are approximately 2,000,000,000 Christians throughout the world, making Christianity the largest religion in the world and the religion of about one-third of the world population;

Whereas Christians identify themselves as those who believe in the salvation from sin offered to them through the sacrifice of their savior, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and who, out of gratitude for the gift of salvation, commit themselves to living their lives in accordance with the teachings of the Holy Bible;

Whereas Christians and Christianity have contributed greatly to the development of western civilization;

Whereas the United States, being founded as a constitutional republic in the traditions of western civilization, finds much in its history that points observers back to its roots in Christianity;

Whereas on December 25 of each calendar year, American Christians observe Christmas, the holiday celebrating the birth of their savior, Jesus Christ;

Whereas for Christians, Christmas is celebrated as a recognition of God's redemption, mercy, and Grace; and

Whereas many Christians and non-Christians throughout the United States and the rest of the world, celebrate Christmas as a time to serve others: Now, therefore be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives--

(1) recognizes the Christian faith as one of the great religions of the world;

(2) expresses continued support for Christians in the United States and worldwide;

(3) acknowledges the international religious and historical importance of Christmas and the Christian faith;

(4) acknowledges and supports the role played by Christians and Christianity in the founding of the United States and in the formation of the western civilization;

(5) rejects bigotry and persecution directed against Christians, both in the United States and worldwide; and

(6) expresses its deepest respect to American Christians and Christians throughout the world.
Got it? A self-congratulatory resolution, introduced by an irate congressman on behalf of the folks who rule America. Nothing in it about peace & goodwill. Need I mention there is very little bigotry in America against Christians, none I'm aware of that attempts to keep Christians out of churches. By contrast, a Jewish man was recently assaulted on a New York subway by people saying he killed Christ. The victim was defended by a Muslim. If Congressman King had voted "yea" to a previous, unnecessary resolution congratulating Muslims on the occasion of Ramadan, one might think he was merely trying to be equitable.

A lot of Christians really need to lighten up. I used to work with Hindus, & they weren't the slightest bit threatened by Christmas. They recognized a great religious festival when they saw one, another opportunity to display colored lights & decorations, buy presents, & eat food. That they considered Jesus a great holy man rather than the messiah was no reason for them to skip celebrating his birth along with Christians, in the very Pagan way we do it here. A few Hindus had the fanciful & rather lovely notion that Jesus had visited India, which isn't far from my thought that he might have picked up a few ideas from caravans passing through Galilee. Hindus generally have a generous view of religious diversity, & if they get upset on occasion over pushy missionaries, it's because those missionaries are disrespectful & ignorant.

Woe to you, congressional hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you ought to have practised without neglecting the others. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel!

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