Perry Hall hosted several events to celebrate the religious roots of Christmas.
Patch contacted various local clergy to find out what they believe is the true meaning of the holiday.
The following is a selection of their answers. Please share your thoughts and beliefs in the comments.
Rev. Vic Harner of Perry Hall United Methodist Church
For us, as Christians, at Christmas we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. We see this as a time when God decided to try a new thing and become incarnate in the world. We celebrate his birth, and for us, it's a time of hope and joy and excitement, because God is with us in a new way. ... It's not just meant for us, but it's good news for all the world. Our challenge is to take that good news outside of the congregation and share it with the world around us.
Pastor Jeffrey Edward Hartman of Perry Hall Baptist Church
I believe, my church believes and Christianity has taught for 2,000 years that the real meaning of Christmas is that God became a human being. The incarnation is the miracle of God becoming a baby in a manger, so that he could become our savior. It's God entering history. There are a lot of traditions that have grown up around it that are fun and fine with us. We don't begrudge Santa Claus or Christmas trees or presents or feasts. We think it's appropriate to celebrate with joy, family and giving. But what we really celebrate is the coming of the savior.
Rev. Richard Brown-Whale of Camp Chapel Methodist Church
Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, and using the reference to him as Emmanuel, it means, "God with us" and also "God for us" and "God in us." It means we don't have to go through this world alone and we have Jesus inside us and rooting for us. It leads us to want to share that love of Christ with other people. It also leads us to acts of compassion, charity and justice. ... Remember it's not our birthday. We're celebrating the birth of Christ. We honor him and particularly, he wants us to serve.
What do you believe is the true meaning of Christmas? Tell us in the comments.