Christmas, it has been said, is many things to many people. In these seven stories the meaning of Christmas is as varied as the time and circumstances in which they take place. A young Quaker recalls Christmas as a time when he received the courage to shelter fugitives. A Dutch fisherman is driven to despair by his own compulsive gift giving. An Amish housewife seeks resolution for a life haunted by the image of a Christmas tree.
Of course, Christmas is foremost a celebration of the birth of Christ, and a time for life made anew, which is why we delight in the redemption of Scrooge. But what of poor Jacob Marley whose sacrifice made possible Scrooge’s salvation?
Christmas is also a time we associate with miracles, and a miraculous gift from Santa Claus allows a boy to make peace with the senseless death of his parents.
And lest it be forgotten that Christmas is a time for joy and playful celebration, there are Roy and Willis, two handymen bent on playing Christmas carols on a pipe organ fashioned out of a pickup truck.
Lastly, in a children’s story, a hermit finds Christmas to be the chance to help a mysterious stranger dressed in black.
Seven stories, seven different Christmases, yet all united by this: Christmas is special to all.
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