(TELEGRAPH) — People should not feel guilty about shopping online on Christmas Day because the festive season is a time for “joy not misery”, the Church of England has said.

Britain’s biggest internet retailers have brought their sales forward to Christmas Eve, with millions expected to take advantage of discounts of up to 70 per cent online.

Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, said yesterday that Christmas Day was a “precious time” for the family and that it was “in danger” of being taken over by gadgets.

However Steve Jenkins, a spokesman for the Church of England, urged people to enjoy themselves.

He said: “I think the important thing is that people enjoy Christmas Day. Jesus wasn’t born to make us all miserable, it’s not about denial.

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