Going to Church on Christmas: A Vanishing Tradition
Millions of Americans go to church on Christmas Eve. They crowd shoulder-to-shoulder in pews to sing "Silent Night" and light candles and listen to soloists belt out "O Holy Night." More than a few watch nativity plays that recreate the birth of Jesus with a cast of 10-year-olds in bathrobes. When the service is over, they exchange hearty "Merry Christmas!" wishes before getting in their cars and heading home.
And they stay home the next day. Or they drive to Grandma's, or go to the movies. But however they spend Christmas Day ‚ÄĒ "the feast of Christmas" on the Christian liturgical calendar ‚ÄĒ one way most Americans don't celebrate it is by going to church. While demand for Christmas Eve celebrations is so high that some churches hold as many as five or six different services on the 24th of December, most Protestant churches are closed on the actual religious holiday. For most Christians, Christmas...
I guess if you go to church at mid-night Christmas eve then you are actually there on Christmas Day by the clock. I don't believe Jesus was born on the 25th, but if that's the day we want to celebrate then technically Israel is about half a day ahead of us here on the east coast and we could be celebrating even earlier and it would already be the 25th there. The church should be glad to see a packed house on any day they can get it.