Santa in Civitas

Envision the perfect gathering, would you, of Christmas love and camaraderie spread profusely into every inch and corner of your assembly? Imagine, if you can, you as Santa clad in Christmas cheer greeting one and all in bubbly abandon and not a frown of discontent or “Bah, humbug!” encountered. I dare say it’s more likely that your perfect picture will give way to this: Santa in Civitas in the Aristotlean sense, that is, Santa in the ultimate natural community surrounded by the sweet, the rotten, the bittersweet, the sour, the tasteless and the cloying.

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I’ll trade you that Santa suit for a shepherd’s robe on a hillside bright with heaven’s light and angel voices announcing the birth of the Savior, God incarnate, come to save us from ourselves – the sweet, the rotten, the bittersweet, the sour, the tasteless and the cloying – day in and day out.

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