The great joy of the Christmas mystery we celebrate is that we don’t have to find our way to God. God comes to us in His Son Jesus! He comes to us as we are, not as we would like to be. He comes to us especially in our weakness, our woundedness, our brokenness. And so our hearts rejoice as we hear once again the glad tidings the angel of the Lord announced to the shepherds on a cold wintry night some two thousand years ago: “Today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord.”
As disciples of the Lord we are called to be a people of joy, a joy that is a gift of the Spirit, a joy that is the fruit of faith and an outpouring of love that overflows our hearts. It is a joy that the world cannot give, a joy that is found only when we welcome Jesus into our hearts and let His love transform our lives. As disciples of the Lord we recognize and celebrate that the risen Lord not only sits at the right hand of the Father, but also dwells now in every human heart in the same Holy Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead.
It is in light of that faith and joy that we welcome everyone who comes to celebrate with us the Christmas mystery, whether on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning. For whenever we come together as people of faith, the Lord is present in our midst. Merry Christmas!
Sincerely yours in Christ, Father Steve Callahan
When and how long is the Christmas season?
It actually begins on Christmas Day and continues until the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord which falls on January 13 this year. And in between we celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family (December 30) and the Feast of the Epiphany (January 6) when we celebrate the Wise Men's journey to visit Jesus and His parents in Bethlehem. Just like the three Wise Men went on a pilgrimage to see the baby Jesus over 2000 years ago, Christians still continue this practice today. See where some of our very own St. B's parishioners have gone on their own pilgrimage in the Epiphany edition of #iamsaintbrigid.
12 Days of Christmas
The 12 Days of Christmas mark the days from Christmas Day until the Feast of the Epiphany—January 6, Legend has it that the song “The 12 Days of Christmas” was written to help young Catholics remember significant elements of our faith. The true love that gives each day’s gift is God Himself, sharing His abundant love with us throughout the Christmas season. So next time you hear or sing this song, remember the beauty and joy of our faith, and thank God for allowing us to learn it in lighthearted ways!
|Day of Christmas||Meaning|
|Day 1 - Partridge in a pear tree||Signifies Christ on the Cross, sacrificing everything for us|
|Day 2 - Two turtle doves||The Old and New Testament|
|Day 3 - Three french hens||Cardinal (primary) virtues: Faith, Hope, and Love|
|Day 4 - Four calling birds||The Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John|
|Day 5 - Five golden rings||The Pentateuch - first five books of the Old Testament|
|Day 6 - Six geese-a-laying||6 days of creation before God rested|
|Day 7 - Seven swans-a-swimming||Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, Counsel, Fortitude, Piety, and Awe of the Lord|
|Day 8 - Eight maids-a-milking||Beatitudes - Blessed are they that are poor in spirit, who mourn, are meek, hunger and thirst for righteousness, are merciful, peacemakers, are persecuted and pure of heart|
|Day 9 - Nine ladies dancing||Nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Generosity, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control|
|Day 10 - Ten lords-a-leaping||Ten Commandments|
|Day 11 - Eleven pipers piping||Eleven faithful apostles|
|Day 12 - Twelve drummers drumming||Twelve points of our faith within the Apostles’ Creed.|
There are so many ways to continue enjoying the Christmas season even after the tree comes down and the presents are put away. Explore the resources below and find some that work for you and the whole family.