Many are familiar with Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas,”   especially its rendition by Bing Crosby. It is an old Christmas carol, going as far back as 1942, yet it is still sung. But is there still a serene white Christmas? In our time, in many places there are no longer snows on Christmas. Either they come too early or too late. Or if there be one, it is no longer a serene white Christmas but a blizzard. All this is due to climate change. Would it be better to wish and dream for a green Christmas first so that the white Christmas may come back?

What is a green Christmas? We may also call it an ecological Christmas. We are called to have a change of lifestyle if we are to avert disastrous wayward weather conditions. This call for change of lifestyle also means a change in the way we behave at Christmas time.

Let not the culture of consumerism eat up our Christmas. The more we buy, the more we throw away. So let us buy less. Oh, the many useless things that are sold and bought during Christmas. Yes, people have more money, what with all the bonuses, the 13th month paychecks and the aguinaldos people receive. A lot of these monies unfortunately end up buying useless things and useless gifts. They end up in the cupboard or in the trash can!

Even the food we consume during this season are not nutritious, and even harmful to our health. Thus blood pressure, cholesterol and sugar levels shoot up, and in the process we consume more medicines. Many traditional Christmas foods are harmful, like ham, cheese, cakes, lechon and chocolates. A green Christmas can also mean green leafy vegetables for our Christmas meals. Have we tried this?

How many plastics litter our streets, parks and malls during the Christmas season? So much money is spent on Christmas wrappers alone, and many glittering ones are non-biodegradable! Plastic toys end up in the dumpsites soon after Christmas.

Then follows the New Year celebration with the smell of obnoxious powder from fireworks. The streets are then littered with firecracker wrappers on New Year Day. Another set of harmful foods follows for the media noche meals.

So what would a green Christmas be? Let it be a Christmas moderate in spending and shopping, but more of togetherness in activities and sharing with families and neighbors. It would be good to cook together, play together and pray together. Companionship is what we need, and not things. Instead of watching TV on Christmas Eve or New Year’s Eve for the countdowns being done in New York, London or the Vatican, why not laugh together in the family, tell stories of what happened the past year and share one another’s dreams and wishes for the coming year? These catching up with one another’s lives will be etched more in our memories than the antics they do in the TV shows half way across the globe!

Let us be more creative in celebrating a green Christmas and not allow our celebrations to be determined by sales and TV shows. It does not take much, and it does not cost much, to be happy and contented together. No one were happiest on the first Christmas other than Mary and Joseph. They had no light. They had no food. They did not have the comfort of a bed or even a warm room. There were no sounds. In simplicity, poverty and silence, they were most happy. They had a new life with them. They had Jesus with them. Theirs was truly a green Christmas!


Broderick Pabillo
December 17, 2019