In the spirit of authentic ecumenism and in keeping with the theme of mercy in the Year of Mercy, let's just say those who follow Protestantism miss the whole point of Christmas. And yes, my Church of Nice Catholics, it is ecumencial and merciful to preach the truth to those who are in darkness. That's the whole point.
Protestantism is defined by its rejection of the Eucharist, just as Judaism is now defined by its rejection of Christ. What does the Eucharist have to do with the Nativity? The Blessed Sacrament is the goal of the Nativity, put in simple, straightforward terms. The eternal Logos crashes into history from eternity to take on flesh to be sacrificed to rise again to provide us that same resurrected Flesh to eat and Blood to drink so that we might be assumed into eternity from history. No Christmas, no Holy Communion. And no Holy Communion, no point to Christmas. Unless you eat the Flesh of the Son of Man and drink His Blood, you have no life within you.
Non-Catholic Christmas is like showing up to a birthday party and ignoring the person's birthday. It is altogether fitting that Holy Mother Church ring in the Solemnity of Christmas, makes Her first act of worship on this Holy Day be Midnight Mass. At the first stroke of the beginning of the day of Christmas, the Church moves us to the immediate goal and end of Christmas by providing the Bread of life born in the City of Bread — which is what "Bethlehem" translates into.
Our Blessed Lord's little baby body was placed in a trough, a manger, where animals ate from, pointing to the reality that one day soon, He would be the source of actual divine food for His followers. What glory! What beauty! What truth! The realization of this reality and its further contemplation is the joy of Christmas. It is in fact the constant source of joy of Catholicism — not back-slapping chortling and guffawing.
The entire point of the Second Person of the Holy Trinity being born was for us to be able to receive Him in Holy Communion. What begins as a small child in a food trough transforms into God being fed to us to nurture us into eternity. Any Catholic — especially those in positions of influence and leadership — who do not tell non-Catholics this truth, who do not go out of their way to tell forth this most abundant treasure of the Church, are guilty of a great sin against mercy and a travesty against authentic ecumenism.
Theirs is a false mercy born not out of love of neighbor but love of self. They are too afraid to tell the complete truth because they fear the scorn of man more than the wrath of God. To deprive someone of the gift of Heaven by depriving them of the truth is a direct insult to the Prince of Peace, a destroying of the plan of Heaven, a cooperation with the demonic and the diabolical.
The diabolical sought through Herod to destroy the Child who would one day provide food to the world. Those in the Church who keep the good news of great tidings from those who need to hear it are modern-day Herods.
Announce the glory of Lord as the angels did to the shepherds keeping night watch over their flocks. It's perfectly fine if those who hear the announcement are deeply afraid. It is terrible in its implication, this Good News — so terrible, in fact, that Satan wanted to destroy it. The shepherds proceeded to Bethlehem after the angel's departure from them to see the sign the angel had told: "Let this be a sign unto you; you shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger."
They went to see the sign, to see for themselves what had been revealed to them. The Church and Her ministers today must do the same — come and see the sign, behold the babe wrapped in bread and wine and lying on the altar. To do anything less, to deprive someone of truth who needs to hear that truth, is a great sin of omission. Talk about being the grinch who steals the joy of Christmas from little ones.
The Good News of Christmas is not confined to the birth of Our Blessed Lord, but the re-birth of His people through their eating of His Flesh and Blood. Christ came from Heaven to bring us back to the Father. The sustenance for that, the bread for that journey, is His own Flesh for those properly disposed.
"No one comes to the Father except through Me." That's the meaning of Christmas.