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Christmas in Africa, Anti-Slavery Trees, and Downward Mobility: A Christmas Roundup

xmasThis week, we have several posts related to Christmas from different perspectives, from the Christmas Tree as an Anti-Slavery symbol, Advent through the lens of downward mobility, and Christmas traditions from several cultures within Africa (the image to the left are children in Ghana dressed up for the holiday!)

Have a Merry Christmas, from every part of our globe!

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The Christmas Tree as an Anti-Slavery Liberation Symbol

Short history of how the Christmas tree was used to aid abolitionist efforts in the 19th century in the United States.

During the Victorian era, this effort was aimed at Northerners who claimed that the degradation of enslaved women and children was too sensitive and immodest a subject to mention in public. They forthrightly proceeded to expose the brutality and rape inherent in the South’s “peculiar institution.” As a symbol of their campaign, fair sponsors adopted an evergreen shrub.

Incarnation as Celestial Migration

Considering the significance of the incarnation from the perspective of downward mobility.

Christ came to a deeply lonely world—including, and specifically, to those most marginalized and vulnerable, to immigrants, orphans, and widows—and offered his presence.  The Incarnation means that God is with us, and that, as Dorothy Day once wrote, “we are not alone anymore.”  In fact, through Christ, the Bible teaches that the fatherless is adopted into a divine family (Galatians 4:4-7), the undocumented immigrant is naturalized into a celestial Kingdom (Ephesians 2:11-22), and the widow is embraced as Christ’s Bride, the Church (Revelation 21:1-9).

How Africa Celebrates Christmas

By Jenna Carter of the One Campaign, this article shows how several different cultural groups within Africa will celebrate Christmas, including some pictures.

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