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A columnist who attends church about once a year says Christmas cards should be, well, Christian.

Virginia Blackburn, writing in the Express newspaper of London, says there are “too few views of a babe in a manger.”

It’s that time of year again, but there are so many cards that “do not represent the Nativity theme.”

“I always buy the ones that donate to charities and pick cards with scenes that reflect the Nativity, along the Mary and Jesus theme, or three wise men,” she writes.

“Except it’s getting increasingly hard to do that. What is wrong with this country? Christmas marks the birth of Christ and yet the vast majority of cards these days have stupid cartoons or trite pictures of snowmen or lewd jokes that are not funny now or at any other time of the year. Presumably this goes hand in hand with suggestions that Christmas should be renamed Winterval in order not to offend non-Christians.”

But she argues the “entire society” is based on Christianity, “and it seems utterly ridiculous that this is somehow being shunted to one side, presumably by card manufacturers desperate to keep in with everyone.”

She says she’s never been offended by cards that reflect a different faith.

And don’t mistake her for a fanatic.

“I am one of those C of E types who goes to church about once a year, if that, but I, like a good many others, want to treat Christmas as the Christian festival that it is. There are still carol services, and midnight masses and plenty of other traditional types of celebration, so why not proper Christmas cards too?”

She says: “In these times of national insecurity and anxiety, we need some types of reassurance and Christmas cards are a way of providing it. Bring them back.”

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