'How Christmas Got to be This Way' on MPR Dec. 23

‘How Christmas Got to be This Way’ on MPR Dec. 23

A talk on “How Christmas Got to be This Way – For Christians and Jews” will be broadcast at noon Friday, Dec. 23, on Minnesota Public Radio's Midday program. It can be heard in the Twin Cities on KNOW, 91.1 FM.

Dr. Bruce Forbes gave the talk last month at two programs sponsored by the Jay Phillips Center for Jewish-Christian Learning at the University of St. Thomas and St. John’s University.

Forbes, who holds the Arthur L. Bunch Chair in Religious Studies at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, gave the talk Nov. 8 at Luther Seminary in St. Paul and Nov. 10 at St. John’s.

Forbes traces how the festival made its way from Christian religious life to a ubiquitous presence in every American’s life, and important to both Christians and Jews. Rabbi Barry Cytron, director of the Center for Jewish-Christian Learning, also spoke on how the holiday affects American Jewish life.

Forbes currently is on sabbatical completing a new book about Christmas in American popular culture. He is the editor of two recently published books, Religion and Popular Culture in America, and Rapture, Revelation, and the End Times: Exploring the Left Behind Series.