I stumbled about an old post, which I posted Christmas last year. Who had thought that we would have to deal with Covid-19 this year too? But the situation seems to me to be different this year. We had the chance to train our resilience and to protect us – where possible – with 3 vaccinations. But come to your own conclusions by comparing your situation Christmas this year with last year.

Christmas is something special. This year it is especially special. This is due to Corona. We may not be aware of it, but the virus gives us a unique opportunity to reflect on ourselves and our Christian tradition. We have the chance to break the annual Christmas routine and get out of the hamster wheel of our habits. What does Christmas really mean to me? Have we not been complaining for years about all the Christmas stress, about the consumer terror that it brings with it?

I have mixed feelings about the hustle and bustle of the churches these days. On the one hand I am amazed at the pastors’ imagination, on the other hand I ask myself: In these turbulent days, wouldn’t it be better to skip the Christmas services altogether? Church services are allowed here in Germany, but the churchgoers are not allowed to sing because of the risk of infection. What is a service without singing? Actually an impossibility. What kind of service is that, where you can’t shake hands as a sign of peace because the sister or brother in Christ poses a potential risk to my health and I to her or his. Under these circumstances, how can I even concentrate on the good news of Christmas?

The whole situation seems artificial and schizophrenic to me. A Christmas service with a mask, 1.50 m distance, without singing, without touching, what a sad affair! And then should I join in the joy of Christmas from the bottom of my heart, as if everything were alright?

No, dear church, dear pastors, I can’t manage this balancing act. I prefer to sit quietly alone at home by the light of a candle. Light in the darkness. A little light that doesn’t know what it will mean for the entire world. But what is the world anyway? Each individual is an entire universe. Christ, the morning star, the light in the darkness. (Volker Schunck)

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