The word  Christmas  is derived from the Old English Christes Maesse, or "Mass of Christ."  We do not know the precise date of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth.  The Western church celebrates December 25th, the time of the winter solstice which early Christians embraced; it is then that days begin to lengthen and light pushes away darkness.  The Eastern church commemorates January 6th, also known as Epiphany.  But we do know the place of His birth--Bethlehem--and the circumstances:  "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us."

Bring the miracle of the birth of Jesus home in a unique way that may become a family tradition:
Observe His birthday with a party! 

The youngest--or the oldest--child of God present will be honored to blow out the candles. 
Have each guest bring a gift for the poor and hungry among us. 
Download Our Lord's Birth Announcement ("It's A Boy!) and suggestions for His cake here:


                                 THE PROCLAMATION of  the  BIRTH of  CHRIST

                                                                                             T O D A Y,

                                                           the twenty-fifth of December,
                                                unknown ages from the time when God created

                                                            the heavens and the earth
                                            and then formed man and woman in his own image;
                                                     several thousand years after the flood,
                                                when God made the rainbow to shine forth as
                                                                 a sign of the covenant;
                                    twenty-one centuries from the time of Abraham and Sarah;
                               thirteen centuries after Moses led the people of Israel out of Egypt;
                                    eleven hundred years from the time of Ruth and the Judges;
                                      one thousand years from the anointing of David as king;
                                   in the sixty-fifth week according to the prophecy of Daniel;
                                             in the one hundred and ninety-fourth Olympiad;
                                               the seven hundred and fifty-second year from
                                                       the foundation of the city of Rome;
                                      the forty-second year of the reign of Octavian Augustus,
                                                          the whole world being at peace;
                                   Jesus Christ, the eternal God and Son of the eternal Father,

                                    desiring to sanctify the world by his most merciful coming,
                                                        being conceived by the Holy Spirit,
                                       and nine months having passed since his conception,
                                       was born in Bethlehem of Judea of the Virgin Mary.
                                            Today is the nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ
                                                                according to the flesh.

                                         Text copyright United States Catholic Conference, Washington, D.C., 1989

                                                        (You may download The Proclamation on our Downloads Page)

​Paradise Tree

       "Where charity stands watching and faith holds wide the door, the dark night wakes,

        the glory breaks, and Christmas comes once more."

                                          --- Bishop Phillips Brooks, from "O Little Town of Bethlehem"