High street toy shop The Entertainer is challenging the ongoing secularisation of Christmas with a prominent nativity scene display in all of its shop windows.
The scene is accompanied by a sign wishing passers-by a Happy Christmas, and a reminder of “the reason for the season – the birth of Jesus”.
Executive Chairman Gary Grant said that as the Christian owner of a toy store, he is at the heart of the commercialism of Christmas, but wanted to make sure the true message is still proclaimed.
‘True meaning of Christmas’
Speaking to The Christian Institute, Mr Grant said: “This is the true meaning of Christmas – in amongst the giving of presents and the coming together as families – the essence of Christmas is obviously the birth of Jesus.”
He said that being less commercial by giving over some of his window space was his “small way” of helping people not to forget “the reason we’re celebrating Christmas”.
He added that he is “passionate” that the next generation has the Christmas story told to them, saying that he often sees grandparents outside his stores explaining the Nativity to their grandchildren.
“I would hate that ‘the reason for the season’ got completely overlooked and it was all about the Christmas tree and Father Christmas.”
Mr Grant said that the nativity scenes were another way in which he could honour God with his business, highlighting 1 Samuel 2:30: “Those who honour me, I will honour”.
He said: “I don’t think it’s just a coincidence that our business has grown exponentially when we’re doing things that commercially don’t make sense.”
“But it makes sense to God, and actually it’s making sense to me,” he added.
He also highlighted the importance of being a Christian influence and living out the Christian faith in every area of work, saying, “we can all make a difference in the sphere of influence that we have”.
Mr Grant’s Christian faith means that alongside being a successful business, The Entertainer is committed to charitable work.
The company tithes ten per cent of its profits to children’s charities, and this year is working alongside The Salvation Army with The Big Toy Appeal.
Any donations made on The Entertainer’s website will be matched by the company to provide presents for families who might not otherwise be able to afford them.