The Christmas season continues with The Epiphany of the Lord on January 6 and The Baptism of the Lord on Sunday, January 11th. Ordinary Liturgical time begins on Monday, January 12th.
THE NATIVITY SCENE…Christmas is not the anniversary of the birth of Jesus. Christmas, the liturgy says, is the festival of the birth of Christ, not his birthday. (Think about the subtle difference here!) Hodie Christus natus est! sings the Latin of the liturgy: “Today Christ is born!” THE CHRISTMAS SEASON brings us into the presence of a wealth of holy signs that reflect the scriptures. We gather around a light-spangled tree as an image of paradise, of the garden where our story began and where, God willing, it will end. We hang a wreath of greens on the front door as an emblem of eternity, of our coronation as the heirs of the kingdom, of our confidence in Christ’s promise of victory. We hang overhead a cluster of mistletoe as a token of peace and reconciliation---like the olive branch borne by Noah’s dove---as if to echo these words of Psalm 85: “Justice and peace shall kiss.”
School Year Church Year by Peter Hays (pp 171, 169 - 170)
Psalm 96…might be called the first Christmas carol (Peter Hays)
O sing to the Lord a new song! Sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy before the Lord,
who comes to judge the world with justice,
who comes to judge the people with truth.