VeggieTales: Saint Nicholas: A Story of Giving
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that despite a focus on St. Nick in this DVD's title there are many references to God and Jesus and the Bible, as well as churchgoing scenes, making this Veggie Tales offering best for Christian families. However the message about the importance of giving and not getting too commercial during the holiday season is likely something all families can appreciate.
What's the story?
As Christmas time approaches, the VeggieTales gang is thinking about what they will do with their gifts. Some characters are thinking about which gifts they will get, while others are thinking about which gifts they will give away. Meanwhile, Laura Carrot discovers that her dad's job is at risk because the truck he uses to deliver packages has broken down. Larry the Cucumber imagines that Santa might fix the problem, but Bob the Tomato looks a little deeper into the meaning of Christmas, and a less-frequently told story of St. Nicholas' charitable journey unfolds.
Is it any good?
The catchy music and funny side-stories will entertain kids of all ages. Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber have different views of the Christmas experience: Larry loves tinsel and blinking lights and knickknacks. Bob prefers the historical aspect of the the holiday, even if it takes a detour to Greece to make a point about charity. Fans will enjoy unraveling the connection between Santa and St. Nicholas, thus answering the inevitable question: What does Santa have to do with Christmas?
The corny jokes allow for some laugh-out-loud moments; all the better for a moral message to be swathed in playful platitudes. However, for non-religious, or non-Christian viewers, the embedded religiosity of this video ("I can love because God loves me/ Jesus' love is why I'm smiling") can ultimately feel a little alienating.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about what giving means to you. When Bob the Tomato mentions a chapter from the Bible (Matthew, 9) that speaks of the virtues of giving things away in secret, what does he mean? Why would giving something to someone without disclosing your identity mean more than when someone knows that you gave a gift?
Many religions emphazise the impirtance of giving. For Christians, special giving can be called "charity." In the Jewish religion it is called "tzedakah." In the Muslim tradition it is called "sedaqua." How are these traditions similar? How do they differ?
How are retailers getting people to spend over the holidays and beyond? Do you always know when someone is trying to sell you something?