Santa Claus: his proper place in Christmas?

“Ho! Ho! Ho!” Yep, that is the sound of old, jolly Saint Nick. Only presently he is commonly known as Santa Claus. He is a giver of bounteous gifts and delicacies. He lives in a castle, according to some tales. But is this his proper place in Christmas?

I found this painting titled “The Spirit of Christmas” and, honestly, I love it. The artist is Greg Olsen and he really captured the spirit of how Santa figures in Christmas for me. Here is the link to his full painting: The Spirit of Christmas.

Christmas is a beautiful time of recognizing the history behind the Christ child and of all those who followed later. The most famous being Saint Nicholas. The giving of gifts that reminds us of God’s gift to the world. The showing of compassion that follows the example of Christ. The beauty of the Christmas decorations and lights, reminding us that God created beauty and wants us to enjoy it.

The proper place of Santa Clause is at the feet of the Christ child. The myths that surround him need to be tailored to honor the true spirit of Christmas and to honor the Christian tradition for which Saint Nicholas stood. Santa Clause is a fantasy story, wonderfully imagined, but today he is commercialized with his values lost in the mountain of toys. Looking to the mood of Olsen’s painting should remind us of Santa’s true place in Christmas.

Question: What place does Santa Clause hold in your Christmas traditions?


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Most obvious thing about me is how much I love reading and writing. This is truly my passion and has been for almost as long as I can remember. I know that sounds cliche, but it is true. Growing up in a conservative Christian home I learned to value God, intelligence, and life. I am always learning. I am a husband and a father of three young children. I love my family and my life. God is good and I attribute my success to His provision.

Great fantasy stories are a lot of fun. I write the stories that I want to read and am fortunate enough to have several published novels under my belt as well as more in the pipeline.

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2 thoughts on “Santa Claus: his proper place in Christmas?

  1. He has little to no place in my family’s tradition. At least, we never really talked about him, and my sister and I never really believed he existed. The only thing my family has Santa related are classic figurines that have been in the family for a long time and a figurine with Santa bowing and praying at a manger.

    • When I was growing up he really had no part in our tradition either. But even as a kid I was fascinated by the legend and the myths.

      When I was at a Christian bookstore in Indiana I did see a figurine of Santa bowing beside baby Jesus. That was the first time my wife and I had seen that and I really did like it. We felt it put traditions in better perspective.