LDS World: World War II and the meaning of Christmas

Published: Sunday, Dec. 22 2013 5:00 a.m. MST

In "I’ll Be Home for Christmas," the vocalist sings of love and family: “I am dreaming tonight of a place I love / Even more than I usually do / And although I know it’s a long road back / I promise you / I’ll be home for Christmas / ... Christmas Eve will find me / Where the love light gleams / I’ll be home for Christmas / If only in my dreams.”

"Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" reflects on Christ, home and friends, “Let your heart be light / ... Here we are as in olden days / Happy golden days of yore. / Faithful friends who are dear to us / Gather near to us once more / Through the years we all will be together / If the fates allow / Hang a shining star upon the highest bough / And have yourself a merry little Christmas now.”

"The Christmas Song" exudes warmth and love, recalling, “Yuletide carols being sung by a choir / ... Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow / ... And so I'm offering this simple phrase / To kids from 1 to 92 / Although it's been said many times, many ways / Merry Christmas to you."

While the horror of World War II tore at the fabric of societies and civilizations, it also reminded many of that which mattered most, of that which is enduring and eternal. World War II Christmas music captures the simple but profound truth that God and Christ love us and that we, as Christ’s disciples, ought to love one another.

Kristine Frederickson writes on issue-oriented topics that affect members of the LDS Church worldwide in her column “LDS World." She teaches part time at BYU. Her views do not necessarily represent those of BYU.

Email: kfrederickson@desnews.com

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