Thought of the Day December 18, 2015

By 10:08 AM


 
In the 16th Century, the persecution of Catholics was so severe in England that Mass was illegal, priests were arrested and some were martyred for celebrating the Mass.  Prohibited from practicing the faith, our Catholic ancestors went underground.  There rose a desperate need to teach the young, and it had to be done on the sly.  The Jesuits jumped in and penned a children's catechism in song and code.   We all know the "Twelve Days of Christmas", but I wonder if we ever knew what it meant to the children of the 16th Century.
 "The Twelve Days of Christmas" salutes the Nativity celebration of opening on Christmas and closing 12 days later on the Epiphany.

"My true love" is God. "Me" is each Catholic.
  On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me a partridge in a pear tree. - (The bird is Jesus Himself and the tree, is the Cross through which we are saved)
 On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me two turtle doves (These suggest the Old and New Testaments)
 On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me three French hens
(The gifts from the three kings)
 On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me four colly birds
(The four gospels)
 On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me five golden rings
(The Pentateuch, the first five books of the Old Testament)
 On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me six geese-a-laying
(The Six days of Creation)
 On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me seven swans-a-swimming (The Seven Sacraments)
 On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me eight maids-a-milking (The Eight Beatitudes)
 On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me nine drummers drumming (The nine angelic choirs of angels)
 On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me ten ladies dancing
(The Ten Commandments)
 On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me eleven pipers piping (The Apostles after Judas betrayed Jesus)
 On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me twelve lords-a-leaping (The beliefs of the Church as outlined in The Apostles Creed)

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