In a recent leaders meeting at our church there was a question that came up, “Are we going to have Santa Claus at the church Christmas party this year?” The question wasn’t addressed specifically to me, it was posed to the group of which I am a part of.

I don’t have an axe to grind against Santa Claus. There are several churches in our area that have Santa Claus as part of their community out reach and attempts to attract people to their churches. I’m not rallying against that, nor do I think “our church” (which isn’t “ours” at all) is better than those churches that choose to have that expression of Christmas attached to their church activities.

However, I am glad that our leaders agreed not to have Santa Claus this year. Why?

I’m glad that we have a leadership, as imperfect as we may be, that decided to pause and ask the question instead of just going forth with it because that is what we have done for a long while.

Santa Claus may have served a positive purpose in the past. However, in light of how diverted and contorted spiritual views have became I simply think it’s a distraction.

My opinion weighs heavily on a comment I heard some one make not long ago during a similar discussion. The person who said this IS a Christian and is above the age of 35 years old. They comment…”It’s just not Christmas without Santa Claus.”

There are many people who actively teach their children that Santa Claus is real. I was not one of those parents. I never tried to crush Alex or Wesley by pointedly telling them, “you know Santa Claus isn’t real!” but I never discouraged their disbelief.

I know, I know, it’s all in good fun and “harmless.”

I’m glad that our church decided not to have Santa Claus as one of its attractions this year.

I believe there is plenty of good family fun to be had with keeping Jesus at the center of what our faith family does.

I’m convinced that we can be seen as different if we are open and clear that we want Jesus to be the center of our focus.

If your church has Santa this year, Merry Christmas.

If your church doesn’t have Santa this year, Merry Christmas.

We all have our reasons and convictions.
However, I do encourage all church leaders to boldly ask the question, “Is Santa Claus distracting from Jesus being the center of what we live, celebrate and teach to our sheep?”