Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Priest decided to tell kids the truth about Santa

This is upsetting ... I do not understand why it is so important to spoil the world of enchantment children live in - it is fragile, beautiful and sadly very short lived. Sooner or later they all grow up, learn the truth - why not let it happen when it does? The pressures of real life weigh on them just as much as it does on adults - school, studies, sports, peers - they have to deal with these things on a daily basis. So what is wrong in believing in Santa, or the Tooth Fairy, or anything else magical and beautiful? A little bit of fantasy, for such a short while in our lives, never hurt anyone. We have our whole lives ahead to deal with reality!

A Catholic priest has been criticised by parents in a city in northern Italy for telling their children that Father Christmas does not really exist. Father Dino Bottino, the parish priest of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Novara, let out the secret at a children's mass earlier this month.

A local paper published complaints from dozens of parents. "You've ruined my children's Christmas," said one mother. But an unrepentant Fr Bottino called it his duty to set the record straight. "I told the children that Father Christmas was an invention that had nothing to do with the Christian Christmas story," he said. "And I would repeat it again, if I had the chance," he added.

But Father Dino could not have imagined the scorn that would be heaped upon him after he told children at mass that neither Father Christmas - nor the kindly witch called the Befana who provides presents at New Year to Italian children - really exist. The priest said he had never intended to hurt anyone, but it was his duty to distinguish the reality of Jesus from the story of Father Christmas which was a fable just like Cinderella or Snow White.

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