Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve

  "The Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory." (John 1:14)

   The magic of Christmas is still with me as an adult. Long before DVDs were invented, my dad would record A Charlie Brown Christmas television special so that my older brother and I could listen to the audio over and over and over during the month of December.
   I loved to go outside and look at the bright, twinkling lights that decorated the houses and yards of our neighbors. And, I will never forget the trips to LaSalette Shrine in Attleboro, Mass. to view the annual Christmas lights and burn colorful prayer candles.
   I was thrilled as a child to get our Christmas tree. It would have to stay on the porch overnight so that the branches opened up. My dad would not budge when I'd ask each year that we decorate it that night.
  But, the most important part of Christmas Eve was the Feast of the Seven Fishes at my grandparent's home, a commemoration of the wait for the birth of Jesus. I hate seafood, however being half Italian-American, I could not escape it. My mother would have to cook her contribution of fish at my grandmother's house because I did not want it to smell up our house or my hair.
  There was always plenty of pizza and broccoli rabe available for me and my 13 cousins, if we didn't want to each the fish or spaghetti and clam sauce that was readily available.
   As this blog will come to a close on Dec. 31, 2010, I would like to say that Christmas Eve stands out as one of the most important days for me as a Roman Catholic. We always went to Mass at 5:15 p.m. at St. Michael's Church in Georgiaville. When I got older, I would walk with my cousins Dorothy, Melanie, and Isabel to St. Lawrence Church in Centredale. And, Christmas caroling would follow.
  Most important, tonight I remember the words of St. Luke: "Suddenly a great company of heavenly host appeared, with the angel praising God and saying "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

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