Posts tagged ‘Christmas’

The First Noel

noel

*

The First Noel, the Angels did say
Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay
In fields where they lay keeping their sheep
On a cold winter’s night that was so deep.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

They looked up and saw a star
Shining in the East beyond them far
And to the earth it gave great light
And so it continued both day and night.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

And by the light of that same star
Three Wise men came from country far
To seek for a King was their intent
And to follow the star wherever it went.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

This star drew nigh to the northwest
O’er Bethlehem it took its rest
And there it did both Pause and stay
Right o’er the place where Jesus lay.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

Then entered in those Wise men three
Full reverently upon their knee
And offered there in His presence
Their gold and myrrh and frankincense.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

Then let us all with one accord
Sing praises to our heavenly Lord
That hath made Heaven and earth of nought
And with his blood mankind has bought.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the King of Israel!

*

Advertisements

Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ [Cloverton Lyrics]

hallelujah

I’ve heard this song hundred times, but still cry for hundred times too! Best rendition ever!
Kaylee Rodgers, a 10-year-old girl from Northern Ireland singing a solo during her school choir’s performance of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, has autism and ADHD. A student at Killard House Special School, she started singing as a way to help build her confidence.

*

I’ve heard about this baby boy
Who’s come to earth to bring us joy
And I just want to sing this song to you
It goes like this, the fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
With every breath I’m singing Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

A couple came to Bethlehem
Expecting child, they searched the inn
To find a place for You were coming soon
There was no room for them to stay
So in a manger filled with hay
God’s only Son was born, oh Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

The shepherds left their flocks by night
To see this baby wrapped in light
A host of angels led them all to You
It was just as the angels said
You’ll find Him in a manger bed
Immanuel and Savior, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

A star shown bright up in the east
To Bethlehem, the wisemen three
Came many miles and journeyed long for You
And to the place at which You were
Their frankincense and gold and myrrh
They gave to You and cried out Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

I know You came to rescue me
This baby boy would grow to be
A man and one day die for me and you
My sins would drive the nails in You
That rugged cross was my cross, too
Still every breath You drew was Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

*

watch Kaylee’s video here

The Story of the Three Kings

This is a story about what happened to the three Kings, (called Magi), before they went to Bethlehem and after they went to Bethlehem.

There was a prophet called Balaam who prophesied saying, “A star shall spring out of Jacob and a man shall rise upon Israel and shall be Lord of all folk.” Because of this prophecy, many great lords and other people of India desired greatly to see that star.

In the land of India where the three Kings lived, was a very high hill called Vaus. On this hill twelve of the greatest astronomers, were asked to watch the stars day and night to see if any unusual light or star showed up in the sky, which they had never seen before.

Then one day something very unusual happened. On the same night and the same hour that Our Lord was born, a new star shone in the sky and it was as bright as the sun. It came and stood still over the Hill of Vaus and would not move. When the sun was most hot and most high, there was no difference between the brightness of the star and the brightness of the sun. And the star had in it the likeness of a Baby Boy and above Him was the Sign of the Cross. A voice came from the star saying: “Unto us is born this day, the King and Lord that folk have long sought. Go then and seek Him and do Him worship.”

All the people of the country were greatly amazed when they saw this wonderful star and heard the voice out of the star. When the twelve astronomers saw the miraculous star, with the Baby King bearing the sign of the cross, they joyfully ran to tell the wisemen of the land all that they had seen and heard.

Now at that time there were three good kings who ruled in India and when the astronomers told them about the miraculous star, they were truly glad. And though each of the kings lived far from each other, they all saw the star at the same hour and the same time. Then each of the three kings decided to go on a journey to see the Baby King which they had seen in the star, and do as the voice from the star had told them to do.

*

magi01

*

Each of the three kings prepared great and rich gifts for their journey. They loaded horses, camels and mules with treasures and took with them a great crowd of people. And they also took along tents and bedding and much food for the journey there, and the journey home.

As each of the three kings left their kingdom the star went before them to guide them; even though they all came from different directions! They rode over many lands and passed through many kingdoms, cities and towns. And even though they came to some dangerous places, neither one of the kings had a difficult time; they were able to carry on with their journey in peace and quiet. And what’s more, the three kings never rested night or day, and they did not eat or drink until they came to Bethlehem.

After twelve days when the three Kings were almost at Jerusalem, God worked a very great miracle so that the three Kings could meet with each other before going to Bethlehem. Melchior with his host of people and animals came first to the outskirts of Jerusalem, near the hill of Calvary. Beside this hill three roads came together to form one road, which led to Jerusalem.

God caused a dark cloud to descend upon the world. Melchior and his host could no longer see the star; so they waited. Along came Balthazar and he could no longer see the star, so he and his host waited. After a time, God lifted the cloud and Melchior and Balthazar started making their way to the main road leading to Jerusalem. Casper and his host were also making their way to Jerusalem and where the three roads join with the main road to Jerusalem, the three kings met each other.

Then God worked another miracle; even though the three Kings spoke different languages, they could all understand each other and they told each other that they were following the star to see the Baby King. They followed the star to Jerusalem and after meeting Herod they followed the star to Bethlehem. As they got closer to the stable where Jesus was, the star shone brighter! And when they arrived in Bethlehem the star lit up the place where Jesus, Mary and Joseph were staying.

Melchior, the King of Nubia and Arabia, offered gold to the Baby Jesus because He was a King. Balthazar, the King of Saba, offered frankincense to the Baby Jesus because He was God, and Caspar, the King of Tharsis, offered the Baby Jesus myrrh, because He became man and would die in order to save people from their sins.

*

magi02

*

When the three Kings left the Holy Family, they stayed that day in Bethlehem and told the people of that city and the people of the surrounding country about the Child Jesus and how the star had guided them from the East to Bethlehem. At night when the three Kings were sleeping, an Angel came and warned them that they should not return to Herod, (as Herod wanted to kill the Baby Jesus), so they went home by another way. As the three Kings travelled through different towns and cities on their way home, they preached to the people about the Baby Jesus, the Star, and all they had seen and heard and done.

Even though it had only taken thirteen days for the three Kings to travel to Bethlehem, it took them two years to return home! When they reached their kingdoms, they preached to their people and told them all that they had heard and seen and done on the way. And they made in all their temples a star, in the same form and likeness as it had appeared to them. Because of this, many pagans left their errors and their false idols and worshiped the Child Jesus.

The three Kings also built a beautiful chapel on the Hill of Vaus, in India, and promised each other that they would meet there every year. This chapel was also visited by many people from different lands.

At the time Our Lord ascended into Heaven, He sent St. Thomas the Apostle into India to preach there, the Word of God. Now as St. Thomas preached the Word of God in the temples of India, and performed many miracles by the sign of the cross, he found in every temple a star which had been painted and formed in the likeness of the star that had appeared to the three Kings on the night when Christ was born.

The three Kings had prayed that they would not die until they had been baptised. So when they heard that a disciple of Christ had come to their lands and was preaching to the people about the works of the Lord, they set out to meet him. Even though they were very old, they dressed themselves in fine garments and went to see St. Thomas. They also took with them other lords and princes and a great crowd of people.

When Thomas saw the three Kings, he received them with great joy and told them all about the life of Christ and what He had taught to his disciples. Then the Kings told St. Thomas how they had gone to Bethlehem to see the Baby Jesus. Thomas was very touched by their story and baptised the three Kings and all the people who had come with them. Suddenly the three Kings were filled with the Holy Ghost and began to preach the word of God to all the people. Then the three Kings went with St. Thomas to the Hill of Vaus, and there St. Thomas blessed the chapel which the three Kings had built. St. Thomas and the three Kings preached to the people in that chapel about the Christian faith and the star that had appeared to the three Kings. And later, around the chapel of Vaus, the three Kings built the Catholic city of Suwella.

When St. Thomas had preached and converted the people of that area to the Christian faith, he then ordained the three Kings as priests and consecrated them as Bishops. And they ordained other priests and consecrated more Bishops to serve God. St. Thomas went on to preach in other cities and towns of India and in time he was martyred.

Two years before the three Kings died, they called together all the Kings and Princes and Bishops of their lands and chose from among them a man who would be the spiritual leader of the people; and who would take the place of St. Thomas the Apostle.

The three Kings lived together like monks in Suwella, for the next two years. Then before the end of the second year, a little while before Christmas, a wonderful star appeared above the city of Suwella. By this star they knew that they would die soon. So they built a large tomb in the church there, where they could be buried. They all said Mass on Christmas day. Eight days after Christmas, Melchior; who was 116 years old, said Mass and then died. Three days later, Balthazar; who was 112 years old, said Mass and then died. And six days later, Casper; who was 109 years old, said Mass and also died.

The three Kings bodies remained incorrupt for many years, and the star appeared over Suwella until the bodies of the Kings were moved away. A long time after the death of the three Kings, the Catholic faith was practised in the city of Suwella and in all the kingdoms of the East. But as the years passed, the people of India fell again into their pagan religion. They forgot about the three Kings and as God’s punishment, the bodies of the three Kings turned to dust!

St. Helen took the bodies of the three Kings to Constantinople, where her son was the Emperor. After the death of St. Helen the bodies of the three Kings were taken to Milan Italy. Some time later, Archbishop Rainald took the bodies of the three Kings to a church in Cologne, Germany, where they still are today!

    The End

The Christmas Ten Commandments

1.    Thou shalt give thy heart to Christ. Let Him be at the top of thy Christmas list

2.    Thou shalt prepare thy soul for Christmas. Spend not so much on gifts that thy soul is forgotten.

3.    Thou shalt not let Santa Claus replace Christ, thus robbing the day of its spiritual reality.

4.    Thou shalt not burden the shop girl, the mailman, and the merchant with complaints and demands.

5.    Thou shalt give thyself with thy gift. This will increase its value a hundred fold, and he who receiveth it shall treasure it forever.

6.    Thou shalt not value gifts received by their cost. Even the least expensive. It may signify love, and that is more priceless than silver and gold.

7.    Thou shalt not neglect the needy. Share thy blessings with many who will go hungry and cold unless thou are generous.

8.    Thou shalt not neglect thy church. Its services highlight the true meaning of the season.

9.    Thou shalt be as a little child. Not until thou has become in spirit as a little one art thou ready to enter into the kingdom of Heaven.

10.    Thou shall not forget to share your joy, hope, peace and faith with those around you.

What Do You Want for Christmas

I want to see the truth and beauty, love and inspiration that is all around and inside of me. I yearn to live from my soul moment to moment, greeting each joy and challenge with the fullness of my being. In the depths of winter, I want to find the light through and beyond the darkness. And it’s not exclusive to midwinter either, it’s my gift for the whole year through!

This touching video beautifully shows children expressing what they truly want for Christmas: love, connection and time with their parents, above any other gift! Seven year old Bobby captured the deeper meaning of Christmas wonderfully when he said “Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas, if you stop opening presents and listen.”

May you find and express your hearts desire and your souls longing this midwinter solstice period, in whatever way is right for you. May you be full with love, joy and inspiration this festive season and into the new year.

*

http://wakeup-world.com/2016/12/13/what-do-you-want-for-christmas-really/

O Little Town of Bethlehem

bethlehem

*

O little town of Bethlehem
How still we see thee lie
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting Light
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight

For Christ is born of Mary
And gathered all above
While mortals sleep, the angels keep
Their watch of wondering love
O morning stars together
Proclaim the holy birth
And praises sing to God the King
And Peace to men on earth

How silently, how silently
The wondrous gift is given!
So God imparts to human hearts
The blessings of His heaven.
No ear may hear His coming,
But in this world of sin,
Where meek souls will receive him still,
The dear Christ enters in.

O holy Child of Bethlehem
Descend to us, we pray
Cast out our sin and enter in
Be born to us today
We hear the Christmas angels
The great glad tidings tell
O come to us, abide with us
Our Lord Emmanuel

*

#ShortNews: Christmas celebrations banned in Brunei

The sultanate of Brunei has banned public celebrations of Christmas.

Christians are allowed to celebrate in their own homes, but a new law makes public displays—including any Christmas decorations—punishable by up to five years in prison.

The ban was demanded by Islamic leaders in the oil-rich former British colony. They feared that public signs of the Christmas celebration could tempt Muslims to imitate Christian practices.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/brunei-cancels-christmas-sultan-warns-those-celebrating-could-face-up-to-five-years-in-jail-a6782561.html