Most of us celebrate our birthdays. Some among us also celebrate their feast day or patron saint day, but how many of us celebrate the day of our baptism? In his book Christianity: The Making of Christians (Kevin Mayhew Ltd., 1979), Mark Searle reminds readers that for many centuries it was the custom in the church to celebrate the pascha annotinum or the anniversary of baptism. It was a sort of class reunion for the baptized, their sponsors and the bishop, at which they celebrated the Eucharist together.
Dec 20, 2013-Jan 2, 2014
A well-circulated Hasidic tale tells the story of a rabbi quizzing his students. He asked, "How can we determine the hour of dawn, when the night ends and the day begins?"
One of the students suggested, "Day begins when, from a distance, you can distinguish between a dog and a sheep."
IN QUEST OF THE JEWISH MARY: THE MOTHER OF JESUS IN HISTORY, THEOLOGY, AND SPIRITUALITY
By Mary Christine Athans
Published by Orbis Books, $19
Christmas: In the bustle of the holiday shopping and commercialism, it's easy to forget that Christmas doesn't end at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 25.
Christmas Soul Seeing: Instead of baking Christmas cookies and running last-minute errands, I had been thrust into an incarnate experience of powerless nativity that transcended a calendar date.
Christmas: Since 1984, NCR has published Maryknoll Fr. Bob McCahill's annual Christmas letter, chronicling his experience among the people of Bangladesh.
During the 2010 Christmas season, the Benedictine sisters of Baltimore found themselves in the midst of a modern-day Christmas story.
My Table is Spread: The Christmas letter author needs a director's eye and a film editor's willingness to leave hours of the story on the cutting-room floor.
The Ma'an lil-Hayat workshop is in full swing as adults shape felted wool into round balls for a large order of sheep to fill people's Nativity scenes.
Ma'an lil-Hayat -- Arabic for "Together for Life" -- is part of the international L'Arche network founded in 1964 by Canadian Catholic Jean Vanier for people with intellectual disabilities. The workshop takes a local resource closely associated with the Christmas story -- sheep wool -- and uses it to bring dignity and recognition to a population often overlooked in Palestinian society.
The Nov. 22 meeting between President Barack Obama and Morocco's King Mohammed VI was a bitter disappointment for supporters of human rights.