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House Votes to Honor Real Reason Behind Christmas

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By Katherine T. Phan, Christian Post Reporter
December 13, 2007|11:38 am

The House overwhelmingly passed a resolution this week recognizing the importance of Christianity and Christmas in America.

Congress voted 372-9 on Tuesday to recognize "the Christian faith as one of the great religions of the world" and acknowledges "the international religious and historical importance of Christmas and the Christian faith."

Representatives also agreed to acknowledge and support “the role played by Christians and Christianity in the founding of the United States and in the formation of the western civilization.”

The measure stated that over three-fourths of the American population, or 225 million people, are Christians who annually celebrate Christmas in recognition of God’s redemption, mercy, and grace.

“For us to move forward towards Christmas without honoring Christ is, I think, a great omission, especially if we're going to honor other religions,” Rep. Steve King’s (R-Iowa), who sponsored the measure, told One News Now.

The Republican lawmaker told Fox News Wednesday that he was motivated to push the resolution to honor the real reason behind Christmas and because of liberal activists and "secularists in the country who are trying to eradicate Christ from Christmas.”

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King said he was upset that not everyone supported the bill. Ten members recorded a neutral "present" vote, 40 did not vote, and nine Democrats voted against it.

Alcee Hastings of Florida, one of the Democrats who voted against the measure recognizing Christianity, says, “America is not a Christian nation.”

“It is a nation of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and everyone in between. Our diversity is our strength and those who seek to use religion as a litmus test are doing a disservice to all of us,” she said, according to The New York Times.

But King said he wants to know how the “naysayers” could vote against the resolution when they voted “yes” on Islam and on the Indian religions two months ago.

The House voted Oct. 2 on a resolution that recognizes Islam as one of the great religions of the world and acknowledges Ramadan - the Islamic holy month of fasting and spiritual renewal. They later also recognized the Indian celebration of Diwali, in which members of the Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist and Jain religions participate. Both measures had no dissenting votes.

“I think there's an assault on Christianity in America," King noted.

King is not alone in his sentiment. In recent weeks, many Christian pro-family and activist groups have been gearing up for campaigns that call on retailers to stop censoring “Christmas” from their holiday advertising and stores.

Influential evangelical leader Dr. James Dobson, president of Focus on the Family, recently reported that the call to action was working.

"There are many of these companies that have re-evaluated," said Dobson in a CitizenLink report. "I believe we're having an impact."

Although some Christian leaders were disappointed to hear that nine representatives elected not to support Christmas and the bedrock religion of America, they praised the resolution’s passage.

“It is only fitting that Congress recognizes and honors Christmas,” said Wendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America. “The celebration of Christmas permeates our entire country as most Americans revel in the joy of the season.”

Mathew D. Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel, said he was pleased to see the vast majority of legislators support Christmas and recognize the fundamental role of Christianity in America.

“Our Founders believed that Christianity was the best foundation for a republican form of government and freedom,” he said in a statement.

 

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