Christmas is coming! Christmas is coming! Your children are probably filled with excitement, counting down each day of December (perhaps with their trusty Advent calendar!), waiting for that glorious morning of Christmas to celebrate that God loved us so much that He became one of us! Right? Well, maybe they’re more excited for the presents. Luckily there are plenty of ways that your family can celebrate the birth of Jesus together. Here are some resources and tips we have collected:
Christmas Celebration Tips
December 13th is the Feast of St. Lucy, a young martyr, whose name means light. Take this opportunity to go driving with your family or walk around the neighborhood and look at the holiday lights. You could also bake some tasty St. Lucy’s buns.
Participate in Las Posadas. Find a local church and celebrate this wonderful Hispanic tradition of processing through the neighborhood looking for lodgings for Mary and Joseph.
Sing Christmas Carols Together – You don’t need a great singing voice, just a lot of heart to participate in this Christmas tradition! Whether someone is playing the piano or you are singing along to a CD, singing together is a great way to celebrate the season. There are innumerable songs to choose from but a great one is, of course, the 12 Days of Christmas.
Watching movies together as a family is another great Christmas tradition. Some spectacular movies to watch during the holidays are: “The Nativity Story,” “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “The Fourth Wise Man,” and “Muppet Christmas Carol.” Here are some suggestions from parenting.com and the bishops.
Attend Midnight Mass! “One of my favorite family traditions (says Angelina) from when I was a child was the opportunity to stay up late with my family on Christmas Eve and attend midnight Mass; I loved the community, the excitement and the sense of family with everyone else who attended the same Mass. Afterwards we would go home and have hot chocolate and pray together.”
Happy Birthday Jesus! – When you are baking together this year consider making a cake or dedicating one of your already made cakes/pies to Jesus. On Christmas day when you dig in, take a moment to sing Happy Birthday to Jesus together as a family!
Receive a Gift, Give a Gift- This Christmas invite your children to making someone’s Christmas bright consider donating a toy or book from their collection for every toy/book they receive for Christmas.
Counting Down to Christmas (Web Resources)
Blessing the Family Christmas Tree – our friends at Loyola Press have provided us with this lovely blessing for your family tree.
CatholicCulture.org – this site gives you options day-by-day for the Christmas Season and also provides links to recipes, prayers, reflections and traditions for your family to explore together.
Christmas Games – here are some great games to play on Christmas day or at your Christmas party! They are meant for children but we believe adults could get in on the fun as well.
Christmas in Other Cultures – here is a list of different cultures from around the world and how they celebrate Christmas; you may find some fun ideas from here.
Christmas in Other Cultures 2 – here is a different list. Some ideas overlap and some are different.