Revisiting a classic — A Christmas Carol

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Evelyn Donnell, 
La Grande
Poet since Childhood

Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol has been around, over a hundred years. It was made into Hollywood movies, scripted for stage plays, copied on CDs, appeared in comic strips; read in elementary schools, in college classes, and most impressive, laid in state in West Minister Abbey with its author, Charles Dickens, among greats like Shakespeare and Chaucer. Dare we call this story a “Religious Story”? I do. It is an enduring, parable as compelling in 2013 as in 1844 when published. Find an original copy, just as it rolled off of Dickens’s pen. Shiver through the appearance of “Ghosts of Christmas Past”, “Christmas Present” and haunting “Christmas Yet to Come”. See the transformation of the shrunken soul and grasping spirit of Scrooge. This timeless tale is all about REDEMPTION and FAITH.

Who doesn’t associate “Scrooge” with quintessential misers, counting their precious coins, greeting all expressions of Christmas with “Bah Humbing!”? Who wouldn’t pity poor Bob Cratchit, huddled over dying coals in Scrooge’s freezing office, expected to work late on Christmas Eve? Who denies trembling at the sound of Marley’s heavy, dragging chains, formed by lovelessness and greed when he was yet alive? Who resists shivering when the dark, woeful ghost of “Christmas Past” appears? – Stand wondering, transfixed as Christmas Present beckons? Who wouldn’t examine their own trembling heart if “Christmas Yet to Come” stretched out a pale hand to you from under a dark, misty robe?

For all former meanness and contemptible actions, can you forgive Old Scrooge, when “Christmas Yet to Come” offers a him a chance to change and accept redemption? Can you dance with him down the city streets, shouting, laughing, scattering coins?

They story sums up with the innocence of crippled Tiny Tim, “GOD BLESS US, EACH AND EVERY ONE!” No more words are needed.

So why should this 1843 Christmas story continue to enthrall readers? If you’re still wondering, find a copy. Make Christmas this year replete with mirth, hope and generosity. Fill your world with greetings of “God bless you, each and every one!”