Despite what the Rev. Someone of Somewhere said on BBC Radio 4 this morning, this is the true meaning of the mid-winter celebrations. From now on the sun rises earlier and sets later, until the summer solstice in June. The celebration of this event goes back way beyond the early Christians, and much of the ancient pagan traditions continue as part of our modern Christmas. I was moved far more watching the sun rise this morning than any carol concert or nativity play ever could.
(Many years ago, I revieved some 'Pagan Man' aftershave as a Christmas present... I blame that!)