Children no longer know why we celebrate Christmas, says pastor Bjørn Lian. He therefore think it is okay to tell children that Santa does not exist, reports Nordlys.
– It is sad that the Christian culture has lost foothold in the Norwegian culture, and schools, said Lian, who is pastor of Karlsøy municipality in Troms.
He adds that many school children today do not know why we celebrate Christmas and it was not so only ten years ago, adds the pastor.
In the UK, a priest recently told to school children that Santa Claus does not exist. Many of the children went home crying, wrote The Guardian last week. Lian thinks it’s okay to say that Santa does not exist.
– Younger kids can be allowed to live with this faith, but when they are six or seven years, they are clever enough to understand that Santa does not exist, says Lian.
The modern Santa’s appearance was popularized in part because of Coca-Cola commercials in the late century. But stories of goblins go way back, also in Norwegian pre-Christian culture.
The word Santa is an abbreviation of the name of Saint Nicholas of Myra in Turkey in the 300s. He was known for his generosity and was honored as a saint of the Catholic and the Orthodox Church.