While Americans are busily treating Dec. 26th as ‘exchange day’ when they take unwanted Christmas presents back to the stores and exchange them for something they like better, the British, and other nations in the British Commonwealth (and other European nations) are busily celebrating Boxing Day. Here is the Wiki summary of what it is…
“Boxing Day is traditionally the day following Christmas Day, when servants and tradesmen would receive gifts from their bosses or employers, known as a “Christmas box”. Today, Boxing Day is better known as a bank or public holiday that occurs on 26 December, or the first or second weekday after Christmas Day, depending on national or regional laws. It is observed in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and some other Commonwealth nations.
“In South Africa, Boxing Day was renamed to Day of Goodwill in 1994. In Ireland, the day is known as St. Stephen’s Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Stiofáin) or the Day of the Wren (Irish: Lá an Dreoilín). In many European countries, including notably Germany, Poland, Scandinavia and the Netherlands, 26 December is celebrated as the Second Christmas Day.”
Now it seems to me that any and all of these traditions are more Christian than what Americans tend to do on the day and days after Christmas. Imagine your employer coming around to your house with say, a box of Bourbon cherries or the like. Americans would be shocked at this. There are many ways to celebrate the birth of the Christ child, but few are more Christian than focusing on giving to others, rather than exchanging things so you have what your little heart desires.