The Legend of the First Christmas Tree
An evergreen sprang from the centre of an oak cut down by St. Boniface. The oak symbolized paganism, and its death brought an end to the old ways. The new tree was “the sign of endless life, for its leaves are evergreen.” St. Boniface took this as a sign of the Christian faith.
During Advent, religious plays were performed around Europe. There was always a tree on stage, decorated with red apples, to symbolize the Tree of Paradise.
The faithful began displaying paradise trees in their homes on December 24, the feast of Adam and Eve. Oh, Christmas Tree
Decorated standing trees became popular in Germany and France. Immigrants brought the tradition to America, but the custom was not popular until the 19th century.
The Christmas tree tradition started in Canada!
The Christmas tree reminds us of:
- The tree planted in the centre of Eden
- The tree of the Cross
The decorating of the Christmas tree offers an opportunity for family prayer.
We praise you for the beauty of this tree:
May its evergreen branches remind us of your unending care of all people;
May it lights illumine the darkness of the winter nights;
May its presence bring cheer and hope for all people. Amen.