The Twelve Days of Christmas

Don’t take down that tree and all those decorations yet! We have become used to seeing the Twelve Days of Christmas referring to the days before Christmas. But, really, we start counting the 12 with Christmas Day as Day One! This short season of the church goes from Christmas Day until the Feast of the Epiphany, on January 6. That is the day we celebrate the Wise Men arriving to visit Christ.

Our family has a tradition of having an Advent calendar for each person with a little gift they can open each day leading up to Christmas. We have had teas, chocolates, jellies, lotions, nail polish, and Lego over the years. Each person has one that fits their personality and their favorite things. We even had one that was a little rock or mineral for each day! Lately, I have also seen 12 Days of Christmas collections that are a pair of socks for each day and even a tiny bottle of whiskey for each day. These calendars are especially appropriate to give as a Christmas gift, as they aren’t a count down TO Christmas, but rather a tally of the days OF Christmas! 

I love that the Twelve Days of Christmas keeps us focused on the Incarnation of God. St. Francis celebrated the Incarnation as a key event for his faith. The Franciscans help us to understand that God came to us because he loves us, that it was always God’s plan. What an amazing gift to celebrate each day of the Christmas season, but also each day of our lives!

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