Breaking news: Santa quits

DEVELOPING: Santa calls unscheduled press conference

Tue Dec 2, 2014 9:55am EST

 

Logo of NorthPole Inc.
Logo of NorthPole Inc.
 

Santa Claus, of NorthPole, scheduled an unscheduled press conference moments ago for 10:30am EST.  This will be the first unscheduled press conference held by Santa Claus or NorthPole since May 1, 2010 when David Jennings was announced as the new Santa following the death of his beloved predecessor.  Check back for more as the story unfolds.

 

Breaking news: Santa quits

Tue Dec 2, 2014 10:41am EST

Moments ago, in a startling announcement, Chairman David Jennings of NorthPole resigned from being the world’s beloved Santa Claus.  To make matters worse in this unprecedented action, Jennings announced to the watching world that Santa Claus isn’t real.  This seemed to take NorthPole leaders by surprise, as they scurried at the podium to try to smooth things over.  Jennings stood solidly in place and continued to explain that Christmas is about Jesus Christ and has been hijacked by the Santa folklore.  At that point, most major networks cut the feed.

Jennings was elected Santa Claus by NorthPole officials on May 1, 2010.  He is the first Santa Claus to ever resign from the post since NorthPole’s founding in 1904.  We have been unable to reach NorthPole.

 

NorthPole responds to Jennings scandal

Wed Dec 3, 2014 10:00am EST

Following yesterday’s shocking announcement by David Jennings, formerly Santa Claus, NorthPole officials responded with a press release.  They write, “We deeply regret the unwarranted actions of David Jennings yesterday.  We apologize for any hardships this has caused any families across the globe, and we commit to continue creating wonderful holiday moments for you for decades to come.”

Whether this means that they will appoint a Santa Claus this year or ever again remains unclear.  Including Jennings, there have been four Santa Clauses since NorthPole’s founding in 1904.  For over the last century, NorthPole has been responsible for spreading holiday cheer by delivering toys all over the world.  In exchange for sponsorship, local and national toy companies have provided billions of gifts, which NorthPole has faithfully given out at no cost to anyone else.  As of now, no toy company has withdrawn from their partnership with NorthPole.

 

Exclusive: Interview with David Jennings

Thu Dec 4, 2014 12:00pm EST

It has been two days since what social media has dubbed “Santagate” transpired.  David Jennings who had remained unreachable since the press conference, contacted this journalist for an exclusive interview.

Michael Bennett: Mr. Jennings, your announcement on Tuesday has caused a lot of emotional and economic turmoil across the country and even globally.  Can you speak to that?

David Jennings: I meant no harm.  I mean, I knew that it was going to be hard for many people, but I did it out of love for them.

M: How do you mean?

D: You tell the truth to people you love.

M: Why not just step down quietly?  There were a lot of children watching that press conference.

D: Michael, children who believe in Santa Claus are being lied to.  But my goal wasn’t mainly to refute Santa Claus.  I was trying to share the gospel to billions of people.

M: What are you referring to when you say “the gospel”?

D: I’m glad you asked, Michael.  Basically, the Bible teaches that everyone has sinned against God and they need to get right with him.  No one can do it on their own, so everyone deserved to go to hell.  But God gave and sent his only son Jesus into the world to be punished in the place of sinners like me, and everyone who believes in him will be saved.  That’s…it, in a nutshell.

M: I have a lot of questions about that, but are you willing to claim, right here on the record, that Christianity is the only true religion?

D: I know that it’s an unpopular viewpoint, Michael, but definitely, yes.

M: Mr. Jennings, it’s been a well-known fact that you have been a Christian your whole life.  Every NorthPole Santa has been Christian.  Why the sudden radicalism?

D: I don’t think of it that way.  I haven’t started being radical.  I went from being complacent, and maybe even not a real Christian at all, to being one who actually cares.  I want to speak the truth in love, so that’s what I did.

M: What will you do next?

D: I don’t know.  I was expecting some fall-out, but I wasn’t expecting so many death threats.  I’m afraid for my wife and child, so I need to take care of them.

M: Any final thoughts?

D: Yes.  I don’t regret what I did.  I’m disappointed that the major news networks didn’t let me finish saying what I needed to say.  I’m appalled at the hatred people can have especially around Christmas.  But I stand by what I did and said.  And thank you for letting me share.

 

Christians disagree on Jennings scandal

Mon Dec 8, 2014 10:00am EST

Recent polling data has shown that only 38% of American Christians agree with what David Jennings said and did nearly a week ago.  43% say that they agree with what he said about Jesus being the main focus of Christmas, but disagree with his actions, and 19% say they disagree with him completely.

Santagate has sparked controversy among Christians this last week.  Yesterday, Pastor Brian McHale of Oklahoma-based Northridge Christian Fellowship, preached to his 30,000 congregants, that Jennings’s actions were “tantamount to Islamic jihadists, making Christianity look bad in front of the world.”  Yesterday afternoon, his comments along with similar themes across the country, sparked blog post after blog post, comment after comment, of Christians sharply disagreeing over the matter.

One year ago, McHale was interviewed on Jimmy Park Live, and when asked if Christianity was the only true religion, he answered, “I don’t know.  All I can say for sure is that God is love.”  These comments also stirred up controversy within christendom.

A pro-Jennings website has emerged, www.standwithsanta.org, and it has reportedly already had tens of thousands of hits.  Since last week’s exclusive interview with Jennings, he has not made any known public appearances.

 

Breaking news: NorthPole introduces new Santa

Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:00pm EST

On Wednesday, following a week of national doubt and confusion, NorthPole inc. has announced the world’s new Santa Claus, Bradley Reese.  Reese has been on the Board of Directors of NorthPole for 15 years.  Reese posted on his Twitter feed, now @TheRealSanta, “Christmas is still on, folks!”  Santa is expected to begin his national tour on Thursday morning.
 
 

Jennings controversy continues with new YouTube video

Fri Dec 12, 2014 5:00pm EST

On Thursday night, a new video has been posted on YouTube, featuring David Jennings, clean-shaven and in a suit, calling for Christians to boycott “NorthPole’s version of Christmas” and for “a return to a Christ-centered celebration”.  He has called for all Christians, as a show of solidarity and conviction, to remove their Christmas lights this year.  Within an hour, the video had 13,164 hits and over 1,400 comments.  YouTube took down the video at 11:20pm EST, stating that it was too inflammatory, but it has reemerged on dozens of other channels and on StandWithSanta.org.

Since last night, polling data has shown that 52% of Christians who had Christmas lights up have removed them as a result of the video.

 

Santa responds to Jennings boycott

Mon Dec 15, 2014 9:00am EST

Following a video posted on Thursday night by David Jennings, calling Christians to boycott “NorthPole’s version of Christmas”, Santa responded with a YouTube video of his own.  In the 2-minute video, he says, “We want to respect everyone’s religious beliefs.  In order to do that, I will only be delivering gifts to houses that we know for sure celebrate Christmas.  So, if you want me to stop by, make sure you have your lights up,” followed by Santa’s classic “Ho-ho-ho!  Merry Christmas!”

Since then, it is reported that nearly two-thirds of Americans who removed their lights in response to the Jennings video put them back up.  Some may have done so to not miss Christmas, and others may have succumbed to peer pressure.  A local woman, Gloria Sapenstein, claims that she has had her house egged and vandalized.  “It [the graffiti] said, ‘Decorate or we’ll decorate for you.'”  She put her lights back up, and has since not experienced any more harassment.

 

Santa passes over undecorated houses

Fri Dec 26, 2014 9:00am EST

After Santa and NorthPole announced that they would only be delivering gifts to houses with Christmas decorations, the world wondered whether they would stick to that policy.  NorthPole did.  On Thursday, @TheRealSanta posted on Twitter, “Because we only shared Christmas with those who wanted it, we were able to give even more to everybody!”

On StandWithSanta.org, the following statement was posted:

“We are not surprised.  We are not disappointed.  We are not ashamed.  Christmas is about this: Mild He lays His glory by, born that man no more may die, born to raise the sons of earth, born to give them second birth. Ris’n with healing in His wings, light and life to all He brings, hail, the Son of Righteousness!  Hail, the heav’n-born Prince of Peace! Hark! the herald angels sing Glory to the new-born King!”

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