Christmas Censors

Dec 13, 2017

Liberty Counsel has handled many cases involving religious viewpoint censorship of Christmas. In places such as city halls and schools, from inside homeowner associations and nursing homes, courthouses and parks – the “grinches” are still at work to steal Christmas joy.

The war against Christmas is nothing new! This antagonism towards Christianity was also found under Communism. In one of the nearly 1,000 radio addresses written and presented prior to becoming President, Ronald Reagan described Christmas under the former Soviet Union. Communist leaders secularized a favorite Ukrainian Christmas carol, “Nova Radist Stala” (Joyous News Has Come to Us). The original song began with these words:

“The joyous news has come which never was before. Over a cave above a manger a bright star has lit the world, where Jesus was born from a virgin maiden….”

Communists feared the public outcry that would follow a complete ban on Christmas, so they began to slowly secularize the holiday, changing the song to:

“The joyous news has come which never was before. Long-awaited star of freedom lit the skies in October [the month of the Revolution]. Where formerly lived the kings and had the roots their nobles, there today with simple folks, Lenin’s glory hovers.”

In Communist Romania, Rev. Geza Palffy, a Roman Catholic priest, delivered a sermon in 1983, protesting against the fact that December 25 had been declared a work day instead of a holiday. The next day he was arrested by secret police, beaten, imprisoned and died.

Inside and outside the Iron Curtain, Ukrainians never stopped singing: “We beg you our Lord, we pray to You today. Grant us freedom, return glory to our Mother Ukraine.” Mr. Reagan ended his broadcast: “I guess we all hope their prayer is answered.” Indeed, it was!

This war against Christmas is nothing new. Cuba’s former leader Fidel Castro, a brutal communist dictator, instituted a 30-year ban on Christmas as a public holiday. 

Repressive forces have always had the same goal – to first secularize and then to eliminate Christmas. We need to be perpetually vigilant and grateful every year for the freedom to celebrate. 

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