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By Laurel Pattenden

Christmas pyjamas have become a fashion statement over the last several years.

Many stores sell matching family p.j.’s so everyone can wake up Christmas morning dressed for the occasion. It is a great photo opportunity. Many Christmas family portraits have been taken with everyone sporting their matching festive sleepwear. I admit there is something quite cozy about a new pair of flannel pyjamas for the start of the winter holidays.

Long before pyjamas became a holiday fashion statement, I remember my grandmother gifting all her grandchildren p.j.’s for Christmas. Now, these did not have reindeer or holly prints on them. For several years you could look forward to this new set of flannel nightwear. It was also a simple way for Grandma to deal with all the grandchildren. Now this grandma gifts pyjamas to her grandson.

There is something about cozy nightwear. I am sure you will agree with that. Especially when I was a child but I do still have several sets of favourite pyjamas. Perhaps the feel of the warm material gave me a feeling of safety. The routine of preparing for bed and getting out of our day clothing and being wrapped in warm, soft, comfortable cloth. It’s like being swaddled. Like Jesus in the manger.

Pyjamas make me think of children and all those who never have this soft, cozy swaddling of safety. With the current wars and climate events happening around the world, many children are missing this nighttime routine of being swaddled in flannel, in safety. Their sleep routines are anything but peaceful.

When a child feels safe, they are able to relax. If you feel relaxed then you may feel rested. If you can feel rested then sleep will follow.

How can these children sleep? They certainly would not feel safe. There are way too many Herod’s in today’s world. Today there are countless (aka) names for Herod: poverty, hunger, cold, orphaned, disease, homelessness, slavery, sex trade, abuse, illiteracy and war.

These Herods live in every single country in the world and can appear without a moment’s notice. In countries considered free or not. In industrialized countries or not. Jesus, with the help of his parents, was able to flee from his Herod. Not all children can.

Christ has a huge place in his heart for children. Jesus said in the Gospel of Luke “let the little children come to me, and do not stop them, for it is to such as these the kingdom of God belongs.” I believe most adults, like Christ, have a huge place in their hearts for children.

Our Christmas story is about a baby who was safe, swaddled and sleeping in a manger. When Herod became a threat, Jesus was taken to safety until the threat had passed. Wouldn’t that be a great Christmas story for all children today. To be safe, swaddled in flannel pyjamas and sleeping in their own bed. When the Herods of this world become a threat to them that they too be safely protected until the threat has passed.

This Christmas, let us all light a Christ candle. Let us also light another candle for the children. Let us pray to the Christ child that all children be swaddled in his Christmas flannel. To feel cozy and warm. To find a home that is safe from the Herod’s of this world.

 To feel the promise of peace on this Holy night.

 Laurel is retired and likes to spend her time in her art studio.