The True Meaning of the 12 Days of Christmas

The True Meaning of the 12 Days of Christmas


Christmas isn’t just a single day on December 25. As we all know from classic songs and from church, there are actually twelve days of Christmas! Let’s take a closer look at each day while we all remember the true reason for the season.

The Twelve Days of Christmas

The first day of Christmas, as you may know, is December 25, Christmas Day. Of course, this is the day when we celebrate the Birth of Jesus!

The second day, December 26, is often called Boxing Day. In terms of Christmas, however, it’s St. Stephen’s Day. He is remembered as the first Christian martyr.

Christmas’ third day, on December 27, is the day of St. John the Apostle.

Day four is on the 28th, and is the Feast of the Holy Innocents: the faithful remember the babies King Herod had killed while searching for Jesus when he was an infant.

The fifth day of Christmas, on the 29th, is St. Thomas Becket’s day. St. Thomas was killed in 1170 for opposing the King’s claim of authority over the church.

On the 30th, the sixth day of Christmas, faithfully observe the day of St. Egwin of Worcester.

The seventh day of Christmas, on the 31st, is also New Year’s Eve. Typically, this is a day of observation for Pope Sylvester I.

The eighth day of Christmas, New Year’s Day, falls on January 1, and is often a day dedicated to Mary, Mother of Jesus.

On January 2, the ninth day, St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen are remembered.

The tenth day, on January 3, is the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus. This day is in honor of Jesus’ official naming in the Jewish Temple.

The eleventh day, on January 4, is St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s official day. She was the first American saint, who lived in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries.

Finally, the twelfth day of Christmas, Epiphany Eve, falls on January 5. This is the day of observation for St. John Neumann, the first American bishop, who lived during the 1800s.

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