DAILY CATHOLIC for December 19-21
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no. 56

Getting to the
Heart of the Matter

by Sister Mary Lucy Astuto

INTRODUCTION: "Getting to the Heart of the Matter" is what Sister Mary Lucy Astuto pinpoints in every issue when she takes a common sense approach to living our faith with her practical columns. This issue she gets to the heart of the reason for the season in Please say: "MERRY CHRISTMAS!" Her column, along with columns by Father John Hampsch, C.M.F. and Father Stephen Valenta, OFM Conv., provide effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www.heartofmaryministry.com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy@aol.com by e-mail.
      After 23 years of working in a well-known local company, my sister retired as of September of this year. She retired because the work was getting to be quite wearing. My sister is a devout Catholic. Almost every day of her "work life" she attended Mass and usually prayed a rosary on her way to and/or from work.

      The work itself, though demanding and wearing, was not the major source of her distress. It seems that the workplace today (and I have heard this from several other persons) is becoming more immoral each day and with that, it is becoming more PAGAN.

      Why do I say immoral? I say that, for one instance, because many companiesí administration reflect respect for homosexual acts and expect its employees to to have similar respect.

      Why do I say PAGAN? I say that because employees are being asked to greet customers with "Happy Holidays!" not "Merry Christmas!" The request is explained away as "We donít want to offend those who are not Christians."

      In my sisterís case, her response was: "But the majority of us here ARE Christians. Why should the MINORITY rule?" This was one more "attack" on Christian Faith that frustrated my sister.

      The expression "Happy Holidays!" and other greetings that withdraw the word "Christmas" is prevalent. Whether itís the news media (newspaper or television), advertisements of various kinds, or whatever - the stress is on not saying "Christmas!" Note it yourself! The next time you go shopping, look particularly for signs around the store that express a Christmas wish. Note how many times the greeting eliminates the word "Christmas."

      This elimination offends me and should offend any Christian who claims to know and love Our Lord, Jesus. After all, Christmas IS Our Lordís Birthday. It IS the primary reason why we celebrate Christmas in the first place --- or should be.

      Eliminating the word "Christmas," is one more influence of the evil one. Out of sight IS out of mind. How tricky the devil is and how subtly he can work to slowly, but surely destroy Faith.

      But let us recall that Our Lord said: "He who professes Me before men, I will profess before My Father. He who denies Me before men, I will deny before My Father" (Matthew 10:32-33).

      Please do not get caught up in the secular greetings. It is PAGANISTIC and DIABOLICAL to secularize Christmas. If you are afraid to offend anyone, if you are ASHAMED of professing Christís Name in "Christmas," then I would not want to stand in your stead when you will have need of Jesus defending you before the Father.

      Iíll never stop saying: "Merry Christmas!" I pray you wonít either! Hereís wishing you a Holy, Happy New Year! And, O yes, --- a Merry CHRISTMAS! God bless you!

December 19-21, 1997     volume 8, no. 56
Sister Lucy Column

December 1997