Associated Press/Photo by Mark Lennihan

Record-breaking Christmas retail sales

by Kiley Crossland
Posted 12/27/17, 11:58 am

Retail sales in the United States jumped 4.9 percent this year during the Christmas season, the largest increase since 2011, according to the latest Mastercard SpendingPulse report. A strong economy and growing consumer confidence helped to fuel retail spending, said analysts, noting retailers benefited from Christmas falling on a Monday this year, giving shoppers a full weekend for last-minute gift buying.

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Imaginechina via AP

Yuletide Yiwu

China | Most of your Christmas decorations likely came from one city in China
by June Cheng
Posted 12/21/17, 02:49 pm

Eaves hung up with twinkling colored lights, an artificial Christmas tree dressed with ornaments of miniature Santas and singing angels, stockings hung by the chimney with care. It’s Christmastime, the music sings, it’s the most wonderful time of year.

Yet the decor livening up your living room, draped in shopping malls and transforming office buildings, most likely come from a place far from the chill of the North Pole, a land where Christmas is foreign but money-making opportunities are not.

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Creation waits

Christmas | Incarnation and resurrection are the pulse of the world
by Janie B. Cheaney
Posted 12/21/17, 09:32 am

Here’s the old-school materialist of the last century, sitting in his library before a cozy fire, puffing on a pipe. “Of course all religions are foolishness, but Christianity is the worst. It’s deliberately anti-science, you see; bases its claims on ‘historical’ events that never could have happened. Take the Incarnation: We are asked to believe that a human female was impregnated by a nonhuman spirit and gave birth to a God-man. How ridiculous is that?”

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