Christmas In Ireland
"For unto us a child is born, a son is given:" Isaiah 9:6
The Irish have tapped into the materialism/commercialism of Christmas. We begin to see decorations in stores around August.
Typically, the Irish will say "Happy Christmas" because "Merry" holds a connotation of drunkenness. Unfortunately, Christmas has become a season for much drinking here.
Although most villages and towns have beautiful light displays and Christmas trees in the town centre, Christmas carollers, candy canes, and outside house decorations are extremely hard to find in Ireland. Stephens Day happens the day after Christmas and is a wonderful extension to Christmas.
As a family we keep our focus and 'vocal-ness' on Christ. We order candy canes from the U.K. and attach the story of the candy cane to them.* We then give out the cards, along with plates filled with cookies, to neighbours, friends, local businesses, schools, and even the post man!
Calvary Chapel Dublin has a Christmas Eve carol service, which is an outreach to the Mulhuddart community and friends and family of our beloved Church family. As a church we also have an initiative we call "Better to Give." We provide full Christmas dinners (turkey and/or ham with all the trimmings) to a number of families in the Community.
We love to decorate our home and welcome anyone for a visit. Recently one of the kids' school friends stated how our home was cozy and welcoming!
In all we do we try to share the love of Christ to a lost world during this beautiful time of year!
by Deanna Tebbe, Missionary to Ireland
*The Legend Of The Candy Cane
Look at a candy cane and what do you see?
Stripes that are red like the blood shed for me.
White for my Savior, who is sinless and pure.
"J" is for Jesus, my Lord, that's for sure!
Turn it around and a staff you will see -
Jesus my Shepherd is coming for me."