Christmas Tree

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Shortandy, Nov 29, 2010.

  1. Shortandy

    Shortandy
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    So a debate has broken out in my church about a Christmas tree being put up in the Sanctuary during a hanging of the greens service. So bring a young pastor up to speed. Is this wrong and why?
     
  2. annsni

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    It's wrong? Really? Well on Thursday, our entire staff of 45+ people will join a the church to decorate including putting 6 Christmas trees up on either side of the sanctuary with lights on them and a bunch of garland and wreaths. We will decorate the rest of the church as well then go into the front lobby where we have a 10' Christmas tree that we will all decorate with ornaments made by a wonderful woman at our church. We will finish it up with the newest member of the staff putting the angel on the top of the tree then we will sing some Christmas Carols around the tree and finally pray. Then it's pizza time!!

    So I'd say there is nothing at all wrong with a Christmas tree to decorate the sanctuary.
     
  3. Amy.G

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    I think some people just like to stir the pot and make trouble.

    We have a fountain in the foyer of our church. It's an angel standing over a pool of water. One of our members says it's idolatry. Some people just need something to fuss about.
     
  4. preachinjesus

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    No more unreasonable than having wise men at the manager scene I suppose...

    We have Christmas trees all over the place, and greenery (artificial I'm sure) hanging all over, and bows, and bells, and lights and you get the picture. For our Christmas program I'm sure we'll have one massive Christmas tree in our worship center too.

    We keep things pretty plain on our stage on Sundays. It isn't a big deal imho. Some people just like pushing buttons.

    Here's a test for the debate: if its wrong to put a (silly) tree up on the platform would they object to it being displayed on powerpoint screens? (assuming you have one or two)

    If it is wrong to have it in church do they have it at their house?

    Of course you can always throw out there that the Christmas tree is a Christian symbol of the tree that Jesus would hang on at the crucifixion. I've heard that one too.

    I think some people take too much joy in killing other people's joy. :)
     
  5. jbh28

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    I haven't put up my tree yet. I have 2 cats not just over a year old and they were very bad with the tree last year. I kept finding them sitting on the limbs of the tree. Just sitting there like nothing was wrong, except for the limb of the tree was out of shape and ornaments on the floor.

    As far as people thinking it is wrong, people can find something wrong with anything. Some look at the Jeremiah passage for support. Now, if you start worshiping your tree, then maybe you shouldn't have it up. Otherwise, not a problem.
     
  6. David Lamb

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    I think I would be more concerned about whether it is right to set aside part of a church building as a "Sanctuary". (But I must quickly add that I am not criticising, as it may be a misunderstanding on my part. :) )

    But do baptist churches really have a section of their buildings that is somehow more holy than the other parts?

    Perhaps the word has a different meaning in America, but here, the word "sanctuary" means the area at the east end of an Anglican or Roman Catholic church building, separated from the chancel by a step and altar rail. They think of their sanctuary as the most sacred part of the church building around its high altar.

    No baptist church building I know of has either an altar (high, low, or medium!) or a sanctuary.

    Incidentally, I have not heard of this "Hanging of the Greens" service you mentioned.
     
  7. Bob Farnaby

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    Living in a country other than the USA does sometimes create a bit of a language issue. The "Hanging of the Greens" thing to an Australian (me) first brought ot mind comments about it being the apropriate action for the political party called "The Greens" here in Aus!

    Do agree wholeheartedly about the sanctury statemets but have found that some here in Aus do refer to the part of the church building where we hold the formal worship services as "The sanctury" and get somewhat upset if it is used for anything else, or if people drink a coffe/ eat a biscuit there.

    As far as the tree, as long as it doesn't become the dominating thing in the church building it doesn't bother me. For me it is one of those things where if you do it, ok, if you don't do it, ok.

    Regards
    Bob
     
  8. Joseph M. Smith

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    A great alternative to a Christmas Tree is a CHRISMON Tree. We created one of these at the church where I was pastor, and one is used at the church where I am now a member. Instead of baubles and tinsel the tree is decorated with symbols of Christ, Christ Monograms. Most are things like the Chi Rho, the Orb and Cross, several varieties of the cross (e.g., Roman, Tau, Maltese, etc). Excellent teaching tool for use with children too.

    There is a Lutheran church in Danville, VA, that creates kits and instructions for those who want and need them. Most of the Chrismons are made of styrofoam and gold paper, rope, etc., and can be stored for the next season.

    The white and gold against the tree is a beautiful sight.
     
  9. annsni

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    I've always known of the "sanctuary" as the room where the church service is held. There's nothing special about it other than it's large, seats lots of people and is set up to be able to handle the church service. Other than that, there's nothing more "holy" about it than any place else in the church.
     
  10. webdog

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    Why not erect a Festivus pole ala Seinfeld. I think the airing of grievances and feats of strength would go over well in most churches today.

    ...and hang a sign on the Angel fountain saying "Please do not worship or bow down to our fountain".
     
  11. preachinjesus

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    webdog, brilliant!

    Perhaps getting the sides to agree will be a Festivus Miracle!
     
  12. menageriekeeper

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    :laugh: I feel your pain. Our tree is up and now we are fighting with the two new kittens over whether or not the garland and lights should stay put or would look better on the floor under the tree. It has taken us a week, literally sitting with a water bottle in hand, to convince them we meant for the garland to stay ON the tree! The bad cat in my sig pic, only want to drink the water out of the stand. LOL

    LOL again at the use of the word sanctuary. The sacntuary is what Ann said, the big room full of pews where the preaching is done. We do NOT eat in the sanctuary! We have a fellowship hall for that. But its not because the santuary is more 'holy' than the rest of the church, just harder to keep clean. Padded pews and carpet were not made to withstand the wear and tear of food being tracked around. Most of the rest of the build is tile and metal and food and other things that cause a mess are welcome there.

    As for the tree, ours is out in foyer again this year. The poinsettas will start decorating the altar area soon though!
     
  13. Amy.G

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    We also have a Christmas tree next to the fountain! :eek:
    It's our Angel tree for needy children.

    We have poinsettias in the sanctuary. :eek::eek:
     
  14. Alcott

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    I wouldn't be concerned that the tree in the sanctuary might needle anyone to worship it.
     
  15. mcdirector

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    I cannot believe your church couldn't figure out a way to float the angle tree in the angel fountain!

    Not thinking hard enough!

    :tongue3:
     
  16. Jim1999

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    I think there is a hymn titled, O Christmas tree........must try to remember the words!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  17. Dr. Bob

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    Not a fan of tree as the focal point of Christmas, much less in the place of worship.

    We meet in a hotel, so bring our own advent wreath/candles to light. No tree.

    The whole "pagan" tree debate has merit. I would not have a tree in the place of worship.

    (BTW in America God lives in a building. We call it "God's House" and teach kids not to run or be loud or mess up God's House.

    And many drop by once a week and visit God)
     
  18. abcgrad94

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    Millions of people are dying and going to hell. I don't care about the Christmas tree. If we have one at church, fine, if not, fine. Millions of people are dying and going to hell and I can't let myself get distracted from that. . . .
     
  19. annsni

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    See, our sanctuary has chairs so we can make it into a catering hall as well. We've had many dinners in the sanctuary and will have one a week from Friday. I'll try to get a picture. We're having a dinner theater!
     
  20. Jim1999

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    I think Dr. Bob is bang on there...Time we got back to church and left the movie theatre and worldly trash at the door.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     

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