by Victor Hoagland, C.P.
Few times are more sacred for a family or household than Christmas. Along with the Advent Season, Christmas time is rich in traditions which, despite modern commercial exploitation, still stir our hearts and imagination. The Christmas tree, the manger scene, the music and carols, the lights shining in the winter darkness joyfully proclaim the birth of Jesus Christ and call us to come and adore him.
Christmas and Advent can be a spiritual feast for those who live these seasons spiritually. And where better to live them spiritually than in our own homes and households? This site's purpose is to help families and households celebrate Advent and Christmas in a Christian way.
Christmas and Advent customs appear everywhere today. True symbols that they are, the living traditions of the season bring peoples and families together and connect us with our ancient faith.
And they respond surprisingly to modern needs as well. The Christmas and Advent seasons uphold so many precious realities presently endangered: birth, children, family, the earth itself. In celebrating Christmas and Advent, keep their message for today in mind.
In a world where nature and our environment are threatened, let us make our Christmas tree and manger scene reminders of the beauty and sacredness of nature. How closely at his coming did Jesus bind himself to the animals of the field, as well as to the earth and the open sky!
Remembering the poor shepherds and the circumstances of Christ's birth, so marked by poverty, let us make them reminders of the forgotten poor of our world.
Let the Child and Joseph and Mary teach us the dignity and importance of children and families in a society so neglectful of them.
The Christmas season's rich traditions come from peoples throughout the world, from Spain, South America, Eastern Europe, and so many other places. Let them remind us of the unity of all people as children of God.
This site may help you celebrate these holy seasons. May it bring you, your family and friends closer to the mystery you celebrate.
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