The Christmas Tree -Christmas
I was thinking that a good way to keep Christ in
Christmas is to rediscover the religious meaning of our Christmas symbols. One
of those symbols is the Christmas tree. The Christmas tree may be seen as a
symbol of the tree of the Cross.
– Well, but it is green…
It is an
evergreen, like the hope we have of eternal life, which never fades. This hope
comes from the Cross. It is a hope that never fades, and that is why the
Christmas tree is an evergreen.
– What are the red balls?
The red balls
are the drops of blood of Jesus on the Cross.
– And the white ones?
ones are his body, his body with the form of the white host, with the pallid
color of a body after death.
– But there is one thing in which the
Christmas tree will never be similar to the Cross: the form. The Christmas tree
is a triangle, and the cross is different.
That is not
quite right thing to say. The Christmas tree, like every tree, has a vertical
trunk with many branches coming out of it. The branches of an evergreen usually
come out horizontally, like the arms of a cross. If the branches go sometimes
upwards, I like to remember the arms of Jesus, hanging from the cross. If,
because of the heavy snow, the branches go downwards, I think that the arms of
Jesus are tired because of our cold sins. And if you tell me that the branches
are too many for a cross, I guess it is because Jesus would like to have many
arms to reach me when I try to escape from his love.
– What does the star mean?
The star is
easy, it is the star that announced to the wise men the place where the baby Jesus
was. (cf. Matthew 2:2, 9-10).
– And the angel on the crèche?
angel that sang “Glory to God in the Highest” (Luke 2:8-14) to the poor shepherds.
– What does the baby mean?
The baby has
to remind you that God wanted to become not only a man, but a baby, to be
closer to you, so that you are not afraid of getting closer to him. If you have
welcome that baby in your life, give praise to the Lord for that. If you have
lost your baby, remember that also Mary lost her beautiful baby on a Christmas
tree [the cross], but she got it back because of the power of God [in the
We lose Jesus
sometimes because of our sins, but the powerful mercy of God is able to forgive
us always and make Jesus abide again in the crèche of our hearts. Our hope of
forgiveness is unfailing (cf. Isaiah
1:18, John 20:23), it is ever-green
like the Christmas tree.
We lose Jesus
other times because of the death of those we love, but the power of God is able
to give them life again, in the resurrection of the last day (cf. John 11:24). Our hope of resurrection is
evergreen, it never fades.
tree is like the cross, a cross of suffering, sure, but at the same time the
cross of our hope in eternal life. Thank you Jesus for being born, thank you
Jesus for dying for me on the Cross, thank you Jesus for bringing hope, meaning
and salvation to my life. Thank you Jesus for your love. May I always love you back. Amen. –Fr. Andrew