Tags

The Thirty-Ninth Day of Christmas Advent. Let’s Celebrate: The 12 Days of Christmas

Melissa K. Tsongranis O Christ, what shall we offer You for Your coming on earth as a Man for our sake? Every creature that has its being from You give thanks to You: the angels offer hymns of praise, the heavens give a star: wise men present their gifts, and the shepherds, their wonder; the earth provides a cave and the desert a manger. As for us, we offer You a Mother, a Virgin Mother.

The Thirty-Eighth Day of Christmas Advent. I Have No Gift to Bring! Wait. There is Exactly ONE Gift I CAN Bring!

Fr. Stavros N. Akrotirianakis Then opening their treasures, they offered Him gifts – ­gold, frankincense and myrrh. -Matthew 2: 11 As we run around purchasing, wrapping, and delivering gifts for other people this Christmas, we must ask ourselves seriously and soberly, “What gift am I offering to Him this Christmas?” As we are now in the home stretch heading towards the Feast of the Nativity as we count down now the hours until we are at the manger,

The Thirty-Seventh Day of Christmas Advent. Christ’s Family—Our Family

Melissa K. Tsongranis The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham: Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers.  Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Ram. Ram begot Amminadab, Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon. Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth…  First verses from the gospel reading for the Sunday before the Nativity (Matthew 1:1-25) For a long time, in

The Thirty-Sixth Day of Christmas Advent. Hieromartyr Ignatius the God-Bearer, Bishop of Antioch

The Hieromartyr Ignatius the God-Bearer, was a disciple of the holy Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian, as was also Saint Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna (February 23). Saint Ignatius was the second bishop of Antioch, and successor to Bishop Euodius, Apostle of the Seventy (September 7). Tradition suggests that when Saint Ignatius was a little boy, the Savior hugged him and said: “Unless you turn and become as little children, you shall not enter into

The Twenty-Seventh Day of Christmas Advent. Christmas Time.

By Father Stephen Freeman, December 24, 2010 The feast of the Nativity of Our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, draws near and the anxiety of the world increases. There are those who worry that the feast is surrounded by too much commercialism. Others fear that religion will once again invade their safely guarded secular spaces. These are only the most vocalized anxieties – busyness consumes our lives. I think of the words from the

The Thirty-Second day of Christmas Advent. Giving and Receiving.

Melissa K. Tsongranis They shall not appear before the Lord empty handed; every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessings of the Lord your God which he has given you. – Deuteronomy 16:16-17 We are an indulgent society. If we want something, we get it.  We love receiving gifts—gifts for birthdays, gifts for holidays, gifts for jobs well done, and even gifts for no reason whatsoever. Sometimes, we even indulge by

The Thirty-First Day of Christmas Advent. Hieromartyr Eleutherius, Bishop of Illyria, and his mother, Martyr Evanthia

Hieromartyr Eleutherius, his mother Evanthia and Caribus the Eparch: Saint Eleutherius, the son of an illustrious Roman citizen, was raised in Christian piety by his mother. His virtue was such that at the age twenty, he had been elevated to bishop of Illyria. In the reign of the emperor Hadrian, Saint Eleutherius was tortured for his bold preaching about Christ, then was beheaded at Rome with his mother Evanthia. The Eparch Caribus, who had tortured

The Thirtieth Day of Christmas Advent. Gifts in Silence.

Vasie-Leigh Andriotis As a person in the Facebook era, I am showered by daily “status” updates and photographs of my friends’ children.  There is such a great joy and anticipation when a child comes into the world or just your world.   Family and friends are so happy to see those new little faces that they have been anticipating.  It is hard to contain the excitement. It must have been unimaginable for Mary and Joseph, preparing

The Twenty-Nineth Day of Christmas Advent. I’ll Be Small for Christmas.

By Father Stephen Freeman, December 19, 2016 Children today are raised with dreams of greatness. Cultural affirmations of our limitless potential, well-intentioned, have not produced a generation of over-achievers, but have indeed brought forth hordes of great dreams. This is nothing new in American culture. We are the world’s longest sustained pep-talk. Ronald Reagan loved to quote the 1945 Johnny Mercer hit: You’ve got to accentuate the positive Eliminate the negative Latch on to the

The Twenty-Sixth Day of Christmas Advent. Christmas in General.

By Father Stephen Freeman, December 23, 2009 “Peace on earth! Good will towards men!” is a common greeting to be found on cards during this season of the Nativity. These are, of course, the words sung by the angels the night Christ was born in Bethlehem (Luke 2:14). It is also a phrase which admits of several interpretations. The possibility of various meanings is very likely the reason for its popularity on greeting cards. Who