Sightings Articles

Black man in blue postal uniform with hat and white man in beige jacket standing in a crowd, with a large red bow behind them

Christmas | Mimetic Rivalry | René Girard | Competition

René Girard and the True Meaning of Christmas

“What’s all this violence? It’s Christmas…”...

December 19, 2023


Everything’s on Sale: Appropriations of Religion

A sighting of the unseen forces of religion at work during the holidays and what they tell us about this age...

December 23, 2019

Christmas | Max Weber | Civil Religion

Christmas Movies and the Religious Dimensions of Story Structure

Can religion help settle the debate about whether or not Die Hard is a Christmas movie?...

December 2, 2019

Christmas | War on Christmas | Myth | religious ethics

A Season of Myths, Part Two

Come what may, the Christmas season is inescapable in America this time of year. ...

December 24, 2018

charity | Christmas

Charities Feel Christmas Fear

“Charities Fear Tax Bill Will Cut Giving” is the kind of headline leaders of churches and charities hate to read about trends that they don’t like to face, as face they must. The subhead in a story reflecting on the current tax bill in The New York T...

December 18, 2017

Tithing | Christmas | Paul Ricoeur | generosity | hospitality

Topsy-turvy Theological Acts

“Tithing in Reverse”

December 29, 2014

Handel's Messiah | Christmas | Advent | George Frideric Handel | Victorian Era | Easter | Michael Marissen | Charles Jennens

Handel's Messiah: A Christmas Oratorio? -- Emily C. Hoyler

The Christian season of Advent abounds with traditions that have been upheld, invented, and reimagined over the centuries. In the West, one such tradition is attending Handel’s oratorio, Messiah (1741), with its famed “Hallelujah” chorus. Every Decem...

December 25, 2014

Christmas | War on Christmas | religio-secular culture

Post-War on Christmas -- Martin E. Marty

Now that the “War on Christmas” is over—its publicist, Fox News Bill O’Reilly, announced this finding last week—we can survey the post-war terrain. We consider it to be one episode in the ongoing unfolding of what Sightings keeps citing as a “religio...

December 22, 2014