Re: Delete if you don't want a Christmas Card

Subject: Re: Delete if you don't want a Christmas Card
From: "Massi, Jerri" <JMassi -at- ADMIN -dot- CLEMSONSC -dot- NCR -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 21 Dec 1994 08:57:00 PST

As cheerfully pessimistic and bitterly ironic as the so-called "card" was
supposed ot be, Nash may have lost some perspective. Let us remember the

Accepting the premise that Christmas is to be celebrated as the birthday of
Christ the son of God (which is the viewpoint of the author of the poem), it
is good to point out that when Christ was born, the Romans had recently
finished subduing the Jews by mass crucifixions of Jewish males, that huge
portions of the Jewish society had already (and were continuing) to forsake
their own heritage founded on law and ethics for the materialistic, cruel,
and warlike culture of Rome, that those who were determined to spend their
lives in vocational ministries were either Pharisees who condemned the poor
and uneducated, or Sadducees who offered no hope of eternal life to anybody.
The temple had become a marketplace; Judaism was distintegrating into
various factions, some of them quite militaristic, even terroristic.

So Nash's poem pointing to social justice and moral reform in the name of
Christ is pointing back to a time that never did exist. Christ, by His own
declaration, came to save sinners and to build the Kingdom of God--not to
reform earth.

Good Christmas cheer to you all! And if you choose to spend Christmas in
commemoration of Christ--hope in Him and not in mankind's feeble attempts to
reform itself in His name.
To: Multiple recipients of list TECHWR-L
Subject: Delete if you don't want a Christmas Card
Date: Tuesday, December 20, 1994 5:20PM

God rest you merry, Innocents,
Let nothing you dismay,
Let nothing wound an eager heart
Upon this Christmas Day.

Yours be the genial holly wreaths,
The stockings and the tree;
An aged world to you bequeaths
It's own forgotten glee.

Soon, soon enough come crueler gifts,
The anger and the tears;
Between you now there sparsely drifts
A handful yet of years.

Oh dimly, dimly glows the star
Through the electric throng;
The bidding in temple and bazaar
Drowns out the silver song.

The ancient altars smoke afresh,
The ancient idols stir;
Faint in the reek of burning flesh
Sink frankincense and myrrh.

Gaspar, Belthazar, Melchior!
Where are your offerings now?
What greetings to the Prince of War,
His darkly branded brow?

Two ultimate laws alone we know,
The ledger and the sword --
So far away, so long ago,
We lost the infant Lord.

Only the children clasp His hand;
His voice speaks low to them,
And still for them the shining band
Wings over Bethlehem.

God rest you merry, Innocents,
While Innocence endures.
A sweeter Christmas than we to ours
May you bequeath to yours.

- "A Carol For Children"
Ogden Nash, 1934

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