Christmas Season

The Epiphany of the Lord

Over the years we reminisce about our childhood and the “magical” season of Christmas. We pestered our parents to tell us one-more-time the story of the Wise Men (Magi) coming from far distant lands in search of a king foretold by the stars. Many could not wait until their parents set-up the family crèche. Each day throughout Advent we would move the Wise Men a little closer to the cave where the baby Jesus would appear on Christmas day.

Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God

One of my fondest childhood memories is of my Dad teaching me how to ride a bike on the church parking lot. In retrospect, a paved venue was probably a poor choice, considering the number of times I came in sudden contact with the ground, and also given that this was well before the days of protective headwear. Still, it was a wonderful experience...

The Nativity of the Lord

Among my favorite Christmas stories is one that has little direct connection to Bethlehem or angels and shepherds, or carols or even Hallmark movies. Rather, it’s an episode from the television series “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Raymond, the favored son of the family, decides to give his parents the gift of a toaster for Christmas, inscribed with a message of love from his wife, his children and himself.

The Baptism of the Lord - Year C

In the study of behavioral analysis, there is a theory that positive reinforcement is an effective way to increase the probability of a particular desirable behavior to be repeated or continued. Today we celebrate the feast of the Baptism of the Lord, the last day of the liturgical season of Christmas. In the Gospel of Luke, we hear of the tremendous and fascinating account of Jesus being baptized by John. 

The Epiphany of the Lord - Year C

The liturgy of the word for the Solemnity of the Epiphany begins with the reading from the prophet Isaiah. The reading begins, “Rise up in splendor, Jerusalem! Your light has come, the glory of the Lord shines upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick clouds cover the peoples; but upon you the Lord shines, and over you appears his glory.”

Feast of the Holy Family - Year C

Upon entering a house during the Christmas season, we always take note of a few things, the various lights and decorations, most especially the Christmas tree and how it is decorated. Usually somewhere around the house, displayed somewhere in a prominent place, is a Nativity set. They come in various shapes, sizes, colors, cultures. But what makes up a Nativity set, what is essential for the Nativity scene?

The Nativity of Our Lord

A few years back, when I was in graduate school, I was invited to a Christmas party at the home of a professor. My intention, as with most parties, was to get in and out as quickly as possible, but this time I found myself having a pleasant conversation with another student, a young woman named Rose. We chatted politely about classes and teachers and current events, but then we found a common passion in music.