Monday, December 12, 2005

No Church on Christmas

Tons of bloggers are posting on the mega-churches that aren't having a service on Christmas day. Most of them are bemoaning the fact that their doors will be best. Some are close to pronouncing heresy. iMonk, who a month ago was repenting for going into ministry because it took time away from his family, blasts churches that are closed on Christmas day out of concern for taking time away from their families. Sven isn't too happy about it either. Jeremy isn't quite sure what to think. Personally, I think its up to those churches. They know their congregations better than I do. It wouldn't fly at my church, but then, my church has lots of Swedes who celebrate Christmas on Christmas eve, not on Christmas day, so going to church would fit in just fine without interfering with their family celebration. For churces in the suburbs (like Willow Creek), its a whole different set of circumstances. Having family in the Chicagoland area doesn't mean they're within an hour of home. I'd guess there are also a higher percentage of families that will have to travel out of state to visit relatives. A lot of people are shocked to learn that there are so many people in our area that celebrate on Christmas eve. Apparently its not a common thing outside of certain communities. Its very common here, and always has been.

One other thing about all the complaining about churches being closed on Christmas. A lot of the complainers are chalking it up to being "seeker sensitive." I guess its just me, but I never thought of Charles Stanley's church as being a "seeker sensitive" church. I know it fits some of the churches being talked about, but definitely not all of them. Some people just like to gripe about "seeker sensitive" churches because they are easy targets. They aren't "old school" churches. I'm not convinced that that is a bad thing. I tend to think that we should be very careful about harping on what God is doing in other churches. There are a whole lot of people coming to Christ in "seeker sensitive" churches. They might not have classes like "How to be a hard-core Calvinist (or Arminian)," but I'm not sure that is how God defines a good church or a good Christian. There are some people who are pretty hard-core about their theology, but only in theory. Their attitude shows that Love is not a part of their lives. Hmm...a little more of a rant than I intended. Anyway...

We're going to my folks for Christmas on Saturday, then church on Saturday night. Sunday will be spent with Jill's family (no church). Usually its the other way around since her family has some of those Swedish traditions, but my folks are going to be leaving to visit family out of state. It'll be weird being with my family the day before Christmas and Jill's family on Christmas, but our tradition isn't really changing, just the family we're spending it with. Me? I'm just looking forward to having a long weekend and a chance to kick back a little.