Japan does not completely ignore Christmas. A massive tree illuminated a main corridor and a group of nearby shops sold Santa related gifts and food. Some people now give gifts, and oddly enough, KFC has carried the identity of "Christmas meal" for almost forty years. Starbucks joins in with seasonal beverages like the gingerbread latte. Many of the commercial aspects and lighting of Christmas exist, though in a smaller scale than in America. However, in a culture that has limited Christian influence, Christmas pales in comparison to New Year's Day.
While visitors will not see "Keep the Christ in Christmas" bumper stickers in Japan (which would lack cleverness, since the title of "Christ" is not in the translation of "Christmas"), the churches glorify God through their remembrance of Jesus' birth. Special services share the story of Jesus' long foretold birth and the importance for the future. Having heard about "Christmas" from television or English studies, visitors may come to experience an "American [read: Christian] Christmas," but few satisfy more than an intellectual curiosity.
Like the birth of Christ so long ago, Japanese people may see some lights and hear rumors of something happening, but few come to learn about the birth of Jesus. It is about time that the news of Jesus spreads, increases, and changes the hearts of the Japanese people.