Friday, December 15, 2006

How to Have a Catholic Christmas

According to our new pastor, here's what to celebrate. It's not just one special day--but eight! He's published this information on the front of this week's bulletin.


Christmas is not the only holyday of our Christmas Season. There are seven others that, collectively, comprise our Christmas Celebration.
The birth of Jesus is not the only event we celebrate. It ends with our observance of his Baptism and the beginning of His ministry. Here are the other holydays of our Christmas Season.

Christmas Day, Monday, December 25
The Church began celebrating this day over 1,500 years ago. The day was first kept as a day which proclaimed faith in a Savior born to be the hope of our future fulfillment.

St. Stephen the Martyr, Tuesday, December 26
On the day after Christmas we hear about the death of the first martyr. We are jolted from the “peace” of Christmas to the awareness that faith in the Babe in the manger could involve death.

St. John, Wednesday, December 27
The Gospel takes us to the empty tomb of Jesus.
The mystery of the birth and death of Jesus are intermixed.

Holy Innocents Day, Thursday, December 28
We hear the story of the death of innocent children. The song of the angels is replaced by the weeping of grieving mothers. The reading of the day says: ‘GOD IS LIGHT. IN GOD THERE IS NO DARKNESS!’ We are left to ponder God and the mystery of evil.

Holy Family, Sunday, December 31
On this Sunday after Christmas, we are not shown a holy-card-perfect family.
We see a real family, united in obedience to the Word of God.

Mary, Mother of God, Monday, January 1
The day speaks to us about the full and faithful cooperation of Mary with the plan of God for her life.

Epiphany, Sunday, January 7
We celebrate the first showing of Jesus to the world.
The Gospel contrasts Herod who wishes to kill the child and the Magi who wish to adore Him.

The Baptism of Jesus, Monday, January 8
The last day of our Christmas Season. We focus on the voice from heaven which tells us who Jesus is.
He is the One-Sent-to-Save. He is the Messiah. He is anointed with the Spirit as he begins His ministry.

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