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small girls holding a snow globe with Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus inside

How can a festival so joyful be so painful to some?

Mark Jeske


Those words came out of her mouth while we were talking in a church hallway one December. I just about fell over from surprise. Aren’t Christians supposed to go gaga over Christmas? Anyone who shows up at one of our church services or concerts will experience a sensory overload of lights, music, messages of hope, pageantry, and red/green/gold/white everywhere. How can you not love this time of year? The kids are so adorable. The traditional carols are so evocative, tying you to every Christmas you’ve ever celebrated. The huge tree still thrills.

She didn’t love it. In fact, she hated it.
Click for an interactive Christmas hymn experience

Explore these articles from the December issue:

Q&A: What are ways to glorify God besides singing in church?

Q&A: What are ways to glorify God besides singing in church?
There are so many choices you can make to glorify God in your life. You glorify God by growing in his Word and worshiping him. Imagine that a world-class chef is preparing your favorite meal. All day long he is making everything from scratch, and you are . . .

Miracle in the mess

song from hymn with christmas bough and berries
Turning on the radio or strolling through shopping centers this time of year can be a unique experience. If you have celebrated more than a few Christmases, you probably noticed the shift in the kind of songs on heavy rotation. While it isn’t shocking that . . .

Growth and partnership in Indonesia

Greg Bey with students from Sekolah Tinggi Teologi Lutheran
In July 2022, WELS Friendly Counselor Gregory Bey made his first visit to Indonesia since the pandemic began. Bey attended the convention of WELS’ sister synod in Indonesia, Gereja Lutheran Indonesia (GLI). GLI currently has about 1,650 members in . . .

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