Saturday, December 24, 2005

doncaster 2 arsenal 2 (AET)

3rd writing since this blog renaissanced.

i haven't written anything about the camp. i guess i haven't shared much either, tho the others have showed their Timor & China camps & videos.

well, this camp has left me feeling quite tired, cos I didn't imagine the extent of commitment and stamina required, and has also left me awed with pauline's energy, organisational skills and selflessness vis-a-vis my own inadequacy.

the first day at the camp, the non-christians didn't seem to gel v well with the rest, some of them were even upset at being separated from their siblings and cousins. but the feedback in the end was that they all enjoyed the outer games, called Amazing Grace, in which they learnt about the story of Christmas thru a treasure hunt type of game around the Queenstown neighbourhood. the 2nd day the campers started learning the songs and skit for the christmas party. at the 3rd day, when i saw them performing the skit and songs together with the church campers, the non-christians singing the christian carols, and playing their roles in the skit, whether as narrator, angel, villager, innkeeper, pregnant Mary, lame man, i knew that they had learnt the story of christmas. this education will remain in their heads. they cannot forget, and people cannot take it away from them. (it's just as effective as national education - the courses I've attended about using drama, stories, videos, pledge, national anthem, invented traditions - to communicate responsible citizenship and justify conscription liability. )

the next step is for them to accept it in their hearts. the same person who was upset at being separated from her cousin was playing the pregnant Mary very well, excitedly singing the Christian carol, "go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills & everywhere that Jesus Christ is born", mixing and gelling well with the church campers, and going around collecting autographs by the third day. i'm so glad that bridges have been built, and the message of Christmas has been imparted, an irreversible deed. this gives some meaning to the month of administration, meetings, stress, time, etc that has been put in.


Blogger the third wei said...

NE courses on invented tradition? wow. nice. haha.

i don't suppose the story of christmas could be an invented tradition as well? albeit one that millions believe in. faith does not necessarily make fact.

sorry, just being a devil's advocate as usual. :p

7:11 PM  
Blogger tausarpiah said...

oh dear is that comment about to be deleted?

7:23 PM  
Blogger the third wei said...

In reply to chelsea5manu0's query:

Nissenbaum's Pulitzer-nominated 'The Battle for Christmas' is a very good, and to me, credible book that questions the christian and modern story of christmas. says of this book:
This scholarly analysis of our modern celebration of Christmas pulls together a thoroughly convincing case for the widely accepted notion that it is a 19th-century creation, indeed a deliberate reformation and taming of a holiday with wilder pagan origins. Christmas was set at December 25 in the fourth century, not for any biblical link with Christ's birth, but because the church hoped to annex and Christianize the existing midwinter pagan feast. This latter was based on the seasonal agricultural plenty, with the year's food supply newly in store, and nothing to do in the fields. It was a time of drinking and debauchery from the Roman Saturnalia to the English Mummers. The Victorians hijacked the holiday, and Victorian writers helped turn it into a feast of safe domesticity and a cacophonous chime of retail cash registers.

6:57 PM  

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