Chatting to a woman and child in a coffee shop about Christmas, I asked ‘What are you doing on December 25?’‘Taking the family to Mass’, was the reply. That’s the real spirit of the season. Not the gifts. Not the turkey. The celebration of the birth of Jesus.

We have Emperor Constantine to thank for the immovable peace and beauty of Christmas. He oversaw the first documented Christmas festival in Rome on December 25, 336 AD. Having said that, it was not until relatively modern times that Christmas gained universal recognition among Christians.When Charles Dickens published ‘A Christmas Carol’ in 1834 he wrote that the US Congress met on Christmas Day; sad, but true!

Aled Jones, Southcliffe Road,


Christmas is a time for remembering

Taking my Christmas card list out is a trip down memory lane. Originally written by my mother Gladys and taken over by me in her later years, it’s a reminder of people long gone. Aunts and uncles, old friends and relatives and people I grew up with now sadly departed - their passing noted by a ‘red line’ across their name.

Yes, Christmas is a time of reflection and thoughts of old friends and times gone by. Not a sad time but a time to remember the past and the people we shared it with and who made me who I am.

DM Deamer, Penleys Grove Street, Monkgate, York