Say you receive an invitation in the mail for a party on October 31. This party will include candy, costumes, and “illusion” (insert picture of a top hat, wand, and sparkly star). Would you assume you were just invited to a Hallelujah party? Probably not.

Yet, depending on where you live, you might see church banners with a similar invitation. Don’t get me wrong. It’s wonderful that churches are serving their communities by hosting these kinds of events. But the peculiar words on church signs this time of year might cause passersby to raise a curious brow—it does for this editorial eye, at least. (more…)

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The weekend following Thanksgiving, my husband and I decked the halls of our apartment with wreaths, garland, and a Nativity scene. And next week, we’ll drag home a heavenly scented Douglas fir to decorate with lights and sparkling ornaments. Christmas is my favorite time of the year, as it is for many people. I love the food, songs, decorations—everything! The festive spirit of the season buoys my own spirit.

For some Christians, both individuals and whole denominations, Christmas can be a source of controversy. (more…)