Key to the Twelve Days of Christmas
The "Twelve Days of Christmas" refer to the eight days of the Christmas Octave from December 25 to New Years Day, and the four additional days up to and including the eve of January 6, the traditional date of the Epiphany. In the USA and many other countries, Epiphany is now celebrated on the first Sunday after New Years, so the exact number 12 does not necessarily apply. But the point is, don't throw out the tree on the 26th--the birth of the Savior can't be celebrated adequately in one day. Let the celebration continue through at least through the Feast of the Epiphany--if not through the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord.
According to the Handbook of Catholic Sacramentals by Ann Ball, the famous song about the 12 Days of Christmas was written in England as a catechism song for young Catholics in the days when it was illegal to practice or teach the Catholic Faith. It contains hidden meanings intended to help children remember lessons of faith. Instead of referring to an earthly suitor, the “true love” mentioned in the song really refers to God. The “me” who receives the presents is symbolic of every baptized person.
There appears to be no conclusive historical evidence to prove this origin of the song, Nevertheless, the traditional association between the gifts mentioned in the song and various spiritual gifts is a fun way to turn a seemingly secular Christmas carol into a valuable catechetical tool. So let's have fun with it!
Partridge in a pear tree Jesus Christ, symbolized as a mother partridge that feigns injury to decoy predators from helpless nestlings.
Two turtle doves Old & New Testaments
Three French Hens Faith, hope, charity
Four Calling birds The Four Gospels
Five Golden Rings The Pentateuch or Five Books of Moses (Genesis through Deuteronomy)
Six geese a laying Six days of creation
Seven Swans a swimming 7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Eight maids a-milking 8 Beatitudes
Nine Ladies Dancing Nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit
Ten Lords a-leaping 10 Commandments
Eleven pipers piping The 11 faithful disciples
12 drummers drumming 12 articles of the Apostles Creed
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Click here to download and print the 12 Days of Christmas!
This selection appears in the Advent and Christmas section of The Crossroads Initiative Library.
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Cat Chat -
WOW! This audio series for kids makes for a stocking stuffer that will help keep Christ in Christmas! Cat Chat is a fun, audio show for just for kids! With loveable cartoon characters, faith-filled stories, and creative, upbeat songs, Cat Chat will make your kids learn and love their Faith like never before. It entertains as it inspires!
There are 6 volumes available, try them one at a time or buy all of them at once with a special EASTER bonus CD!
CD Volume 1: Mary Leads Me Closer to Jesus
CD Volume 2: Jesus in My Heart
CD Volume 3: Amazing Angels and Super Saints
CD Volume 4: The Mass Comes Alive
CD Volume 5: A Christmas to Remember!
or the complete set that includes - CD Volume 6: An Extra Special Easter.
All Things Girls - GIFT BUNDLE
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Exploring the Catholic Church - DVD
When you have questions about the Catholic Church, where do you turn? This mini-series is one of the best places to begin looking for the answers. Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio's presentation style is perfect for seekers and inquirers, new Christians, for RCIA candidates or for Catholics who just want to refresh their faith and practice. An ideal gift for your friends and family - PERFECT gift for anyone going through RCIA!
Catholic Saint DVDs -
In a world of magic, violence, and phony superheroes we have found a series of videos with phenomenal music, faithful storylines and animation. These are guaranteed to hold attention of kids 5-12 or your bucks back! Bring Mary, the saints and angels to life in the lives of your kids, grandkids, nieces & nephews! Each DVD contains English, Spanish, and French!! Let your children grow with saints like: Nicholas, Bernadette, Patrick and others – come check these out TODAY!
A lot of children on your list? Be sure to check out the special s-a-l-e on the complete series!