HASTINGS-ON-HUDSON, New York, U.S.A. – When most people think of Christmas, they automatically think about Santa Claus, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and presents.
People in our modern era have lost touch with the real meaning of Christmas. But my family is not like other families during the Christmas season because my mother is a minister for Grace Episcopal Church.
Ever since I was a little child, I’ve gone to church during the Christmas season. My mother and father taught me the lessons from the Gospel and told me to “always remember what Christmas is really about.”
The real story of Christmas is the Nativity. It is the story of how the baby Jesus was born, and the miracles that happened. For Christians, it is a new beginning, when we can celebrate the first coming of the Lord.
I have always kept these messages strong in my heart as if they were burning candles, and my mother has always lit the flame. She makes every Christmas moment a precious memory, from decorating the tree to going to hear her preach on Christmas Eve.
There is one tiny drawback to being “a minister’s kid.” On Christmas Eve, you sometimes go to church twice in one evening.
For my mother, this is the Super Bowl of church services. She is at work 24/7, writing her sermon and getting everything ready for the Christmas service.
Sure, it’s tough for me not to see her a lot during the holidays, but it’s worth it when I open my presents! But don’t feel bad for me; she is the one working until midnight on Christmas Eve, and then having three teenagers wake her up at 6 o’clock the next morning.
The amazing thing is that she loves being the minister of a church and also a mother. She loves praising God every Sunday for all the gifts He has given her. She loves bringing new and wonderful traditions into the household.
Whenever I am feeling sad or lonely, my mother is the glistening star in the sky that I can always follow, like in the Nativity story.
Some people have lost sight of this meaning. Materialism and Christmas craziness consume us all, and we sometimes lose track of the ones that love us. The ultimate goal for all people during this magical time of year is to let go of the stress and to spend time with the people that love you.
I have always loved my mom and I never stop. She is a teacher, a preacher, and most of all, the best mother a “church kid” could ask for.
Luke Pearson is a Reporter for Youth Journalism International.