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December 21, 2017

Celebrating Christmas: Incarnational Vision

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” Matthew 5:8

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Seasonal Feast Days & Holy Days

December 14, 2017

Prayer for Setting Up the Crèche

Setting up the crèche is a beloved tradition in both homes and parishes. I have seen a number of beautiful Nativity sets over the years. Many of them reflect cultural traditions and customs, thus making the little tableau both accessible and universal. The origin of the crèche is attributed to Saint Francis of Assisi who, in order to both accommodate an overflow crowd in the small town of Greccio, moved the Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve outdoors. He set up a manger, filled it with hay and brought two live animals to bring the scene to life.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics For Families

December 6, 2017

Christmas Past, Present, and Future

Trimming the tree. Baking cookies. Hanging out the stockings. Sending greetings. Welcoming visitors. Wrapping presents. Singing carols…  The list of Christmas activities goes on and on. Some of these traditions have been part of my celebration of the holidays for as long as I can remember. Others, like sending cards, are off and on again activities, depending on my store of time and energy. Some endure year after year because “it just wouldn’t be Christmas without it.”

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics Prayer

November 30, 2017

Celebrating Saint Nicholas Day

Our family first celebrated Saint Nicholas Day about twenty-five years ago. We gathered with a cherished circle of friends for a post-Thanksgiving meal that didn’t have anything to do – or so we thought – with Saint Nicholas. Our hostesses – two Franciscan sisters – gave each child a stocking filled with goodies. We sang carols, told stories, and laughed heartily. After repeating the celebration the following year, complete with stockings, it soon evolved into an annual tradition that began to fall around December 6th, feast of Saint Nicholas.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics Prayer, WBAS Cat Prayers & Reflections

November 21, 2017

Celebrating Advent in the Home

My mother loved all holidays but most especially Christmas. Each year a new decoration was added to the mix in our home – colored lights strung around the lattice windows, holly boughs festooning the stairway bannister, a giant wreath that encircled our entire front door. Her years as a member of a neighborhood garden club resulted in an accumulation of Christmas crafts that ranged from wall hangings of glittering Christmas trees to Santa’s sled, filled with greenery and tiny wrapped packages.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas

December 14, 2016

8 Printable Catholic Christmas Prayers

The Catholic Christmas season begins on December 25th and ends in January on the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. During this season, we celebrate the birth of Christ, the Son of God, God with us, true God and true man, Emmanuel, who was born long ago in Bethlehem and is still among us today. Download Catholic Christmas prayers to celebrate this joyous season with students, children, and families!

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics Holidays, WBAS Topics Prayer

December 5, 2016

Advent Joy; Lighting the Pink Candle on the Advent Wreath

This Sunday we light the odd candle on the Advent wreath. Long before pink became a symbol of breast cancer awareness, it took prominence in the third week of Advent as a sign of joy. “Guadete” (meaning “rejoice”) Sunday marks the halfway point on our Advent journey. Paul’s letter to the Philippians encapsulates the joy that marks our faith in God’s eternal love and mercy. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4).

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics Prayer

December 1, 2016

Virtues Series: Prudence and the Problem of Christmas Excess

I still remember the Christmas we gave our children bogus plush toys. The craze at that time was for stuffed bears emblazoned with rainbows, shamrocks, and other colorful symbols. Their retail price, however, was simply beyond our budget. As a substitute I bought two small bears at a discount store and sowed decals on their stomachs.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Prayer of the Week, WBAS Topics Prayer, WBAS Topics Virtues & Values

November 23, 2016

The Season of Advent

My favorite season of the year is approaching. Setting out familiar symbols puts me in the mood for a time of joyous expectation. Advent is about to begin.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Topics Holidays, WBAS Topics Prayer

November 21, 2016

Advent Prayers for Families

The liturgical year begins with Advent, the four weeks prior to Christmas. It is a season of preparation, waiting, and anticipation. Download and print these free Advent prayers for families to celebrate this joyous season.

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WBAS Seasonal Advent & Christmas, WBAS Prayer of the Week, WBAS Topics Prayer


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