Do You Remember The Grinch?

In Dr. Seuss’ book of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” the Grinch comes to the realization that Nothing can stop Christmas from coming. After he steals all of the presents from the people of Whoville he hears them singing while he is 10,000 feet up on his mountain of garbage:

“They’re finding out now that no Christmas is coming!
They’re just waking up! I know just what they’ll do!
Their mouths will hang open a minute or two
Then the Whos down in Whoville will all cry boo-hoo!

That’s a noise,” grinned the Grinch, “that I simply must hear!”
He paused, and the Grinch put a hand to his ear.

And he did hear a sound rising over the snow.
It started in low, then it started to grow.

But this sound wasn’t sad!
Why, this sound sounded glad!

Every Who down in Whoville, the tall and the small,
Was singing without any presents at all!

He hadn’t stopped Christmas from coming! It came!
Somehow or other, it came just the same!

And the Grinch, with his grinch feet ice-cold in the snow,
Stood puzzling and puzzling. “How could it be so?

It came without ribbons! It came without tags!
It came without packages, boxes, or bags!”

He puzzled and puzzed till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before.

Maybe Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store.
Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more!

This year, 2020, the year of the Great COVID pandemic, the year of sheltering in place, being away from extended family for the holidays, financial hardship, and great sadness, maybe this year we may come to the best Christmas of them all. We may come to the realization that Christmas, the Feast of the Nativity that celebrates the birth of the Christ Child comes without ribbons. It means a little bit more. In fact, it means a whole lot more.

In his letter to the churches of Galatia, Paul affirms that the Son of God came to this earth at just the right time in the divine scheme of things. He expresses the thought like this:
“But when the fullness of time came; God sent forth his son, born of a woman, under the law.” (Galatians 4:4)
It means that this year, the Year of the Great Pandemic, that Christmas comes without ribbons as the Christ who came that first Christmas and as he comes even now…

Christmas Day is in our grasp
So long as we have hands to grasp.
Christmas Day will always be
Just as long as we have we.
Welcome Christmas while we stand
Heart to heart and hand in hand.

James Hegedus