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Is the Senate working during Christmas holidays sacrilegious?

Senators Kyl and DeMint claimed working up to the Christmas holiday defiles Christianity's holy day. But Jesus made clear that 'helping your neighbor' trumps 'keeping the Sabbath day holy.' Not addressing legislation to promote peace and care for others would be the real sacrilege.

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When I was sixteen years old, I worked in a grocery store. My parents were divorced, money was tight, and I needed the job to pay for my car and insurance. So when my manager told me I was working on Christmas Eve, I couldn’t put up much fuss.

“Son, I know full well it’s a holiday,” this good Oklahoma Southern Baptist told me when I asked about the schedule. “But people still got to eat.”

Last week, Senators John Kyl (R) of Arizona and Jim DeMint (R) of South Carolina expressed their indignation that the US Senate would be working during the days leading up to Christmas – what they consider to be part of the Christmas holidays.

Sen. Kyl argued that Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D) of Nevada was offering disrespect to “one of the two holiest days for Christians,” and Sen. DeMint called it “sacrilegious” to vote on a spending bill and nuclear arms control treaty during Christmastime. Sen. Reid, for his part, argued that many of his constituents would be working during the holidays. Why shouldn’t the Senate finish its work?

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