9 Ways to Celebrate Christmas on Campus

By James Bascom   
It's OK to say
"Merry Christmas"

Just as the Christ Child was rejected 2,000 years ago, and had nowhere but a cold stable for a birthplace, our world has little to do with Christmas.

Articles questioning the existence of Christ, the virginity of Mary, and other Catholics tenets are disseminated by the media, and lawsuits aim to remove “offensive” Nativity scenes from the public square.

What can be done? TFP Student Action has compiled a list of very concrete actions you can take to celebrate Our Lord’s coming this Christmas Season.

1. Never use the “H” words: “Happy Holidays.” The secular term means nothing and only serves to erase the memory of Christ from Christmas and the Holy Season we celebrate. Wherever you go, make it a point to wish others a Merry Christmas: at the supermarket, in class, in the cafeteria, on the phone, in e-mails. You’ll be surprised. Many people will appreciate your Christian convictions.

2. Decorate your college dorm: Hang beautiful Christmas ornaments from your dorm window.  Pick up some large poster board and markers at the bookstore and make signs that read, for example, “Just Say Merry Christmas!” Write with big clear letters. Tape one sign to your dorm window facing out for everyone to see. Place another on your dorm door. Encourage your friends to do the same.

3. Send Christmas cards: Send a Christmas card with a religious message to your most liberal professor. Mention that you will pray for him/her. You can also send a card to the president of your college or university. Also, look for an opportunity to write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper about Christmas. Letters receive avid and wide readership. Try it.

4. Organize a Christmas celebration: Set up a Nativity scene on the quad or “free speech” area of campus. Invite your friends to help you. Be creative. Sing traditional Christmas carols. St. Augustine said: “He who sings prays twice.” You might also choose to pray the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary as a group. Close the celebration with Silent Night. Meet somewhere for refreshments. Talk about Christmas.

5. Plan a Eucharistic adoration: Find an Adoration Chapel near you, ask your friends to join you for a holy hour before Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament in honor of Christmas. Mark your calendar for a convenient time before Christmas break. Evenings are best for students.  After your holy hour, go out for coffee.
Find a chapel near you.

6. Visit the sick: Those suffering in hospitals and nursing homes faintly remember the joy of Christmas. Illness, pain and loneliness overwhelm them as they spend their last days. It is a work of mercy to visit the sick and suffering. You can bring joy and Christmas cheer to someone forgotten in a hospital or old folks home. Your local nursing home will likely welcome visitors. Take something to give away; for example, Miraculous Medals. Everyone likes them. To order free Miraculous Medals, call 1-888-317-5571.

7. Prepare yourself spiritually: The Season of Advent prepares us to celebrate the Birth of Our Lord worthily. We should erect a throne in our souls to receive the King of kings. For that reason, it is an excellent time to make a good Confession and make sacrifices. For example, give up watching TV or surfing the Internet.

8. Write a Christmas message to the troops: Thank them for their sacrifice and service. Show them your support. Wish the troops a blessed Christmas and tell them you will remember them in your prayers. Remind them that people back home appreciate them. Send a message to the troops.

9. Do you have any suggestions? Please contact TFP Student Action with your suggestions to complete number nine. We would like to hear from you. Send your e-mail to: [email protected] and thank you for your efforts to restore the real meaning of Christmas.


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+12 # Mikey 2010-12-10 16:22
Good ideas.
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+18 # Lance 2010-12-13 14:03
Although it's too late for this year, students might want to consider purchasing an Advent candle and Advent calendar next year and use them to count down to Christmas. Many advent calendars have a suggested Bible reading for each day behind their windows which gradually tell the story of Christmas.
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0 # John 2012-12-04 22:13
I think someone could certainly start using an Advent wreath and candle even now. Arguably, someone could buy and use a calendar through this week too.
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+21 # Doni Juarez 2010-12-13 17:20
When you go to a store, make sure you let your feelings be known. For instance, I went to the local grocery store "Lowes Foods" and they were actually playing spiritual Christmas music. Jesus, God and Heaven were used in these songs, it was beautiful. I let the management know how much I appreciated it. If the only one they hear from is the complainer and not those who don't have a complaint, who will they listen to? On the flip side, Walmart and Sam's Club are getting an earful from me because a cashier at Walmart informed us they were not allowed to say Merry Christmas unless the customer said it first. Then at Sam's, where we were pleased to be greeted with Merry Christmas, a manager chastised this lady... in front of customers... for saying it. I am complaining all the way to the top.
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+19 # guadalupe castro 2010-12-14 09:47
I once saw a person with a t-shirt saying "Jesus is the reason for the season", maybe students could do the same, wearing t-shirts displaying Christmas messages....
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+13 # Angie 2011-12-02 00:09
Matthew 5:16

Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
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+15 # TIm Offenstein 2011-12-02 12:17
These are all great ideas. I want to encourage everyone to be sure, most of all, to display Christ-like love towards everyone rather than a combative spirit. Jesus took on human form and died for all of us to redeem us and show God's love. Let's be sure that above all the hoopla, we demonstrate that spirit foremost. God bless!
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+12 # Bruno Sessego 2011-12-02 12:20
I once said Merry Christmas to a store clerck, and he replied with Happy Kwanza ,so I thanked him with a big smile. His obvious intention was to shock me, but he was shocked when I showed him I was not a bigot, and taught him a lesson in tolerance.
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+12 # AR 2011-12-02 12:21
I have a decoration sign that I hang next to my entrance door that reads "Jesus is the reason for the season" and I also wear a pin that says "Its' ok to say Merry Christmas to me" (got that frofm the Knights of Columbus). I also respond with Merry Christmas whenver someone says Happy Holidays at the store, very often they smile and say Oh yes Merry Christmas to you too"
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+12 # Marty 2011-12-02 12:47
I decorate my office with nothing but Christmas theme! No snow men, so Holiday Cheer, just Nativity scene, angels and "Merry Christmas"
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+1 # Merton 2012-12-04 16:22
Quoting Marty:
I decorate my office with nothing but Christmas theme! No snow men, so Holiday Cheer, just Nativity scene, angels and "Merry Christmas"

I do too.
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+13 # Rick Kratz 2011-12-02 13:40
I also have magnets for my car which has a nativity scene on it and the words "Keep Christ in Christmas."
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+15 # CPA 2011-12-02 16:12
Write MERRY CHRISTMAS in big red letters front and back of envelopes you are mailing, whether Christmas cards or bill payments.
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+10 # Peggy 2011-12-02 16:47
It would so nice to bring back the tradition of singing Christmas Carols with family and friends at different houses in the neighborhood.
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+5 # Daniel 2011-12-02 18:36
Gracias por mantenernos informados, aprecio mucho sus consejos.
Que Nuestro Señor Jesucristo, en estas fiestas, sea para Ud una fuente de bendiciones, renueve nuestra fidelidad y nos ayude a ser renovados a través de su gracia. El Señor ilumine su rostro y lo colme de paz y alegria. Saludos!
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+6 # Jean 2011-12-02 20:09
What wonderful ideas on how to celebrate Christmas! My daughter is a student of Environmental Studies. She has left the Church in favor of no religion! These comments are encouraging to me from those who have kept the faith. Merry Christmas and many blessings to all!
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+4 # Antonio Fernandez 2011-12-02 23:39
This year i bought 64 religious Christmas cards and send out 40 so far. These nativity scenes and three wise men and shepards are beautiful cards. I also put my magnets on my cars."Keep Christ in Christmas"
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+6 # Marie Czarnecki 2011-12-03 00:34
At the VA where I worked they did not allow us to say "MERRY CHRISTMAS", but I did anyway..Jesus means a lot to me , he suffered for my sins and sins of others, and forgave us all..
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+2 # John Flaherty 2011-12-03 06:26
Be careful with what you decide to do. If you have a determined secular campus, your efforts may not spread the joy and hope of Christ; they may spawn a culture war. Any atheist, agnostic, or secular group on campus will almost certainly raise a ruckus, especially if you try caroling or providing a nativity scene on campus.

Academia talks loudly about tolerance. Actually LIVING said tolerance..often can be more like a whimper. Your school's administration may be very obstructive withi regard to what you should, technically, have a complete right to do.

I recall being unable to accomplish many things in campus precisely because I simply didn't have time. Any "free speech" I did tyically came at the expense of studies that I really needed to attend.
I had to give up on most de-facto political activism precisely because my over-full-time course load didn't leave much time for extra-curriculars.
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+5 # cecile phillips 2011-12-03 10:08
i started saying "merry christmas" to everyone last year and one of the clerks looked at me with a strange look. i asked her if she was not allowed to say that..she hesitated and then wished me a "happy christmas". cecile
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+5 # Genevieve 2011-12-03 10:18
I'm going to have a huge caroling party this year. It's a wonderful tradition that is being forgotten. We are including friends from different faiths and we are going to sing with joy in the spirit of Christmas.
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+8 # Patriot 2011-12-03 10:21
We purchased the pins "It's all right to say Merry Christmas" from One Million Moms, then gave them to our kids, grandkids, and dear friends. We wear ours every day, along with our "Jesus is the reason for the season" pins. When a clerk or salesperson wishes us happy holidays, we respond with Merry Christmas - amazingly, many will then wish us a Merry Christmas and smile! It's almost as a thank you for giving them the opportunity to say the truth, inasmuch as many managers tell them happy holidays is the right thing to say. Merry Christmas and let's work together for a FABULOUS 2012 to restore America to Judeo-Christian beliefs.
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+4 # Patriot 2011-12-03 10:56

PLEASE go this website to see a FABULOUS video about Christmas and stores. I just viewed it and love it! Am going to forward it to all my email buddies! Merry Christmas!
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+3 # mark barrett 2011-12-05 22:20
good ideas people, keep flying the flag for God, the stupid people of today are bringing on their own destruction by removing Christ and his ways from their lives, we must not make that mistake!.. God bless you all Mary guide you all.. St.Michael protect you all.
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+2 # Mari 2012-12-04 13:19
Just quietly hummmmm spiritual Christmas carols as you walk around a store.
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0 # Mile 2012-12-04 23:31
Pray during the 4 weeks of Advent.
Send Christmas cards, not Season or Holiday cards.
In shops with no Christmas music do not shop and say the reason.
Go to Mass every day and confess and take Communion. Be the Catholic.
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0 # Kenyi 2012-12-05 15:30
Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas!

Never say Happy Holidays, Merry x-mas, and etc!!!

God bless you.
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-1 # Chris 2012-12-05 17:48
Respond properly with "love and reverence" when greeted with "Happy Holidays".

One way of doing this is the following:
Person 1 "Happy Holidays"
Person 2 "Thank you. What holiday are you and your family celebrating?"
Person 1 (usually a pause) "We are celebrating 'X'"
Person 2 "Well, i wish you and your family a Happy 'X'.

It's perhaps a subtle method of explaining that one of the things lacking with Happy Holidays is that it is impersonal. Sadly, Person 1 has yet to ask me the same question.

Haven't gotten into a further discussion on this with the other person, unfortunately, but another nonreligious way of explaining it is the following: No one ever says "Happy Holidays" instead of "Happy New Years". That is because we are celebrating an event. It is a holiday, but this is not what we are happy about.
(not my idea, dennis prager the radio talk show host goes on and on about this).
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0 # Mike 2012-12-05 18:17
It is so nice to see that young people are doing things to keep Christ the center of Christmas. I'm in my 60's and most of the things I now see on the web or in the news from younger people are anti-Christ. So - Keep up the good work young ones. My heart has been lifted by you. God bless and protect you!!!!
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0 # Kevin-Mary Eze 2012-12-07 07:44
In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph. Jesus is not known and loved in our generation because the knowledge of His Mother is poor. In union with Her let us pray for all who reject Her Son.
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