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Kael Otero wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Why do Catholics celebrate Christmas as the birthday of Christ when it can't be found in the Bible?

Kael Otero

  { Why do Catholics celebrate as the birthday of Christ when it can't be found in the Bible? }

Mike replied:

Hi Kael,

You said:

  • Why do Catholics celebrate Christmas as the birthday of Christ when it can't be found in the Bible?

I think a better question is:

  • Why wouldn't any Christian celebrate Christmas?

Though God was incarnated man (and begotten as the God-Man) at the Annunciation, Our Lord was born into our physical world at Christmas, thus beginning His Journey to Calvary for the sake of our salvation.

The Bible is not a Catechism or book of Catholic beliefs, nor was it ever intended to be one.
The Bible is a liturgical book, meaning a book that was meant to be used in our worship service, the Mass.

Catholic Christians and non-Catholic Christians, as well as others, celebrate Christmas because it has been an Oral Tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation from the Apostles. The Church uses the nativity passages in the Bible for this great celebration. Since the word Christmas cannot be found in the Bible:

  • I wonder how many Protestants are aware that they are celebrating an Oral Tradition,
    (a Teaching most Protestants reject), when they celebrate Christmas?

I hope this answers your question.


Paul replied:

Dear Kael,

To add to Mike's answer, historians do not know the exact date of Christ's birth. It has not been recorded in any reliable source nor did the ancients mark their calendars in the same way we do today.

It does make sense, however, that the Church would choose a day where the sun begins the cycle of shining more and more each day after the winter solstice. Christ, the True Light of the World, came into the world to bring light to it, in the form of truth and goodness.

He, through His extended body the Church, will eventually blot out the darkness of this world of sin.


. . . and Merry Christmas.

Bob replied:


You must have had a visit by the Jehovah's witnesses. They object to all feasts, birthdays, holidays, etc. They gave you a mistaken interpretation of the Scriptures which denies common sense.

The Bible is full of feasts, particularly in the Old Testament. Jesus himself honored these feasts, and endowed His Own Church built on Peter to figure out all the aspects of our worship. They figured we would worship on Sunday, not Saturday, in honor of the Resurrection, but you don't see it explicitly in the Bible. Likewise there are many other days we celebrate which are not explicitly spelled out.

So, if God objects to feasts being celebrated:

  • Would Jesus keep them?
  • Would the Old Testament be full of directives to keep them?
  • Would we not imitate Jesus?

We celebrate Christmas because it is the very birth of the God-Man, who came from Heaven to save us from sin.

  • Could there be a better reason to celebrate?

Even the wise men celebrated by making their pilgrimage to bring Him gifts. While we cannot give Him gifts directly, we can gift each other and the poor to show our love for God and neighbor.

Lastly, any Christian can object to the way commercialism has taken over Christmas but that doesn't mean we should forego our religious feast in its true sense.


Bob Kirby

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