Mollie of GetReligion.org has written about the commercialization of Epiphany. Here’s a snippet from the end of her post. Interesting stuff; check it out.
“Last year I wrote something for the Los Angeles Times about the secularization of Christmas in America. One of my favorite responses came from a pastor in Indiana who told me he began his Christmas Eve sermon thusly:
‘Pulpits all over Christendom will again be decrying the secularization of Christmas. I suppose I can’t blame them. Christian preachers are bound to fantasize about the Church being doctrinally and liturgically pure and all the world loving it for it. But I am enough a historian and a realist to know that if it wasn’t for the secularization of Christmas we’d have a lot fewer people here tonight. If the Church has given the world a holiday for nostalgia and guilt-abating good works, even if the coming of Jesus Christ is missed, the world has given us a once-a-year opportunity to proclaim that coming. If the option to the secularization of Christmas is that Christmas be as popular and well-attended as Ascension, I’d say hurray for secularization, and only wish that I could come up with a way to get Madison Avenue to promote other Holy Days.
Other Holy Days, of course, don’t so easily give themselves over to nostalgia. It is hard to be cute about Good Friday.'”