Seven is commonly understood to be the number of completion, at least in Christian mythos. Fitting, as this day is the beginning of the New Year. Which, come to think of it, is why the arbitrary choosing of the New Year is a week after the for-whatever-reason choosing of December 25th for Jesus’ birthday.

Or maybe it’s the other way around. Maybe since they needed to Christianize Winter Solstice celebrations, they decided to make the Christ Mass then. But since January 1st is a fixed date, that would be the beginning of the new year. Rather than Christmas being ten days before the new year (on solstice), it would be seven days. Thus the 25th.

Obviously I’m stretching. But I really haven’t heard any theories to explain these rather random placements of these holy dates that quite satisfies me.

However, I’m starting to think the choice was a good one. Winter Solstice is an acknowledgment (well, in the Northern Hemisphere) that the sun is coming back, that the days are getting longer, that hope is alive, that things WILL get better. The Christ Masses made a point to emphasize that Jesus’ birth signified light coming into the world, a new dawn has appeared, a new hope is on the horizon.

And isn’t that what New Years is really all about, Charlie Brown? A time to collectively mourn, reassess, and reconsider and all that last year had for us and regroup and generate new hopes for the next year?

I pray that we can garner new hope as this new year begins and work towards meaningful and lasting and maybe even substantial happenings in our lives.

Here’s to you!


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