I got a comment yesterday on a post I wrote a year ago defending Christmas carols in Advent. Wow! These posts really do hang around forever. I looked at them again and mostly stand by what I wrote. Here is the whole string of posts:
First, I detected a genuine longing for Christmas, beyond some grabby-greedy-gimme kind of consumerist thing, and wondered if other people were feeling that too. (For what it's worth, I don't feel that same urgency for the Christmas message that I did last year at this time... you?)
Next, I unpacked some of the tensions between Advent and Christmas hymns and mounted a theological defense for singing Christmas carols in December.
Finally, I looked at some non-theological reasons for the same... some of them more substantive than others.
Actually, you guys argue---I have a book to finish.
And if you'd like a soundtrack for your discussion, may I recommend Peter Mayer's Midwinter---beautiful Adventy stuff there, with a bit of Christmas thrown in. These are all original songs---no chestnuts roasting on an open fire here.
Indeed, his song "Where is the Light?" is a perfect example of an Adventish song that has a celebratory, upbeat tone---which is something I talk about in my second post.