Christmas is a Season

Christmas is a season… that starts on Christmas Day. You can think of the season of Christmas as complementary to the season of Advent: during Advent we anticipate what during Christmas we celebrate.

You’ve heard the phrase “the twelve days of Christmas”? Those are the twelve days between Christmas Day and Epiphany. But the liturgical season of Christmas lasts all the way to the feast of the Baptism of the Lord, a week later. This feast marks the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry as an adult, as described in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and so it’s a suitable closing for the season of Christmas.


4 thoughts on “Christmas is a Season

  1. Pingback: Liturgy: Christmas is not technically over | Tennessee Christian News

  2. I put the final pieces together when I learned the reason Ordinary Time begins with the “Second Sunday” of Ordinary Time was because the baptism of Christ is considered the First Sunday, but it’s also part of Christmas.

    I’ve received a number of shocks from my husband and his family (good Southern Baptists you know). The biggest shock was the first year we put up a tree. He started taking it down on December 26th! He thought Christmas was over while I thought it was just starting. No wonder he wanted to put the tree up on December 10th.

    • Oh, that’s funny! I remember chatting with someone online a few years back who was some flavor of low church Protestant, but had an appreciation for high church liturgy around the holidays. He decided to go to a Catholic service the Sunday before Christmas, and was very surprised that it wasn’t Christmasy at all — he’d been expecting “Joy to the World,” not “O come, o come Emmanuel”!

  3. Pingback: Ordinary Time | Are You Catholic? Did You Know…?

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