Category Archives: Christmas

2023 Coming

2023 liturgical calendar arrived today. But I mostly don’t use paper calendars. Still, I had to peek. When Transfiguration falls on a Sunday, it means an Advent/Christmas crash will follow, one of my favorite liturgical year alignments. For my new parish, … Continue reading

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Camels As Ships

One interpretation of the “three ships” in the English carol is that they symbolized the camels, the “ships of the desert” presumably used by the Magi.  Bethlehem is clearly not a port, and I think we do well to respect … Continue reading

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Titus or Timothy?

This weekend’s cycle C option for Baptism of the Lord includes a mask-up of the Night and Dawn readings from Christmas: Titus 2:11-14; 3:4-7. I wonder if a better option wouldn’t have been to include the credal statement from 1 … Continue reading

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The Epiphany Sunday Dust-Up: It’s Golden

“It was fifty years ago today, US bishops moved a holy day.” I remember in my early days as a Catholic that Epiphany appeared on January second. It first happened in 1972 and it happened again yesterday. A not-too-deep look … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1973: Needlepoint and Madonna

I know it’s just an artistic design on a stamp from 1973, right, but if your tree ornaments were at this scale … well, that’s a nicely huge gingerbread cookie for munching. You can have those 18-inch candy canes. The … Continue reading

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Hannah and Her Son

Over the years, I’ve experienced a certain vehemence about not using the cycle A readings every year in Lent on those third, fourth, and fifth Sundays. The feeling strikes me as equally strong to stick to the cycle A options every … Continue reading

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The Feast Of Stephen

Somewhere in my deep memory, there was a preacher who spoke with approval of the dropping of the observance of Christendom’s first martyr the day after the festivity of the Nativity. Let’s not get caught up too much in celebrations, … Continue reading

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See What Love

I know that the holiday for gratitude was last month. However, I feel a swell of gratitude for family, friends, and faith community this year. A cycle C reading for Holy Family, in part, covers the whole meaning for me: … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1972: A Coronation and a Santa

Check that painting above. Venture a guess as to what it might depict? For Catholics, it’s easy: the feast celebrated on the 22nd of August. This was the inspiration for the USPS “traditional” Christmas stamp. Specifically, a pair of musicians … Continue reading

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Much Ado About Christmas

“You’ve been watching too many superhero movies,” said the young miss. I was telling her about my nightmare of getting kidnapped with her and her mom and being threatened with death in vats of acid, so there would be no … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1971: Shepherds and a Partridge

Another 16th century Venetian, the one known as Giorgione, gave the US mail his Adoration of the Shepherds, once again courtesy of the National Gallery of Art. The USPS edited out the accompanying landscape. Obviously, way too large for such … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1970: Joseph Debuts, Plus Some Toys

Thanks to Lorenzo Lotto, a 16th century painter from Venice, we get a full Christmas scene in 1970 for cards and letters courtesy of the US Post Office. The National Gallery of Art supplied the art. Check the full original here. … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1969: Winter

After four years of Gabriel, Mary, and Jesus, the US Post Office pulled back a smidge from explicit figures of Christian importance. The last edition of the Christmas stamps of the 1960s might be my favorite. It marks a further … Continue reading

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Christmas On Film: Anger Management?

As the years move on, I see a lot more dissent on the value of the film It’s a Wonderful Life. I admit the movie has never made my list of favorites. Of the people I know, some seem to like … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1968: Return of the Angel

For Catholics, the Annunciation (right, painted by Jan Van  Eyck, and in possession of the National Gallery of Art) is an Advent Fourth Sunday event. Or March 25th. Not Christmas as such. The US Post Office didn’t care in 1968.  … Continue reading

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