Yesterday I needed to take the older lady I help to the bank. Now I could tell you a story about that but I will stick to the point of this blog. While waiting for her to cash checks, I was looking at a free magazine called City Revealed. Flipping through I came to as section by Carol L. Ballard about Christmas and why we use red and green colors and what the meaning behind "The Twelve Days of Christmas" song. I found it interesting and so I thought I would share it with you.
Why the colors red and green? Green stands for eternal life. Red represents the blood Jesus would shed for us on the cross. This was also the first color chosen for Santa's costume when Coca Cola used it for advertising on their pop bottles during the last part of the century. Red and green are also one of the reasons for using holly to represent life and blood.
The Twelve Days of Christmas song: when Oliver Cromwell came to power in England Catholics were not allowed to practice their faith openly. So in order to teach their children to understand their Christian beliefs, The Twelve Days of Christmas was created. Here is what they symbolize:
Partridge in a pear tree: Jesus. A partridge will sacrifice its life to save its young, and Christ sacrificed His life for mankind.
Two Turtle Doves: the Old and New testaments of the Bible as well as Mary and Joseph at the birth of Jesus.
Three French Hens: faith, hope and charity. Or three gifts the wise men brought to the new King.
Four Calling Birds: the 4 evangelist Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
Five Golden Rings: the first 5 books of the Old Testament.
Six Geese a-laying: the six days of creation, or six days of human labor.
Seven Swans a- swimming: the seven gifts or sacraments of the Holy Spirit. Wisdom, understanding, counsel, strength, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord.
Eight Maids a- milking: the eight Beatitudes from the Sermon on the Mount.
Nine Ladies Dancing: nine choirs of angels, Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones, Dominions, Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Archangels and regular angels. Or the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit, love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, patience, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control.
Ten lords a-leaping: The Ten Commandments.
Eleven Pipers Piping: the eleven faithful Apostles.
Twelve Drummers Drumming: the twelve articles of belief in the Apostles' Creed.
And there you have some interesting facts about this holiday that we celebrate.