In the Beginning: Reflections on the Nativity Fast

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Unlike our American culture, which celebrates from now until Christmas, with celebrations ending promptly on December 26, the Orthodox Church celebrates the Nativity throughout the year. Our joyful part of the celebration in this season is supposed to be from December 25 through January 7. November 15 through December 24 is a period of fasting and reflective preparation. The focus is neither shopping nor decorating, but meditating on the awesome miracle of the Son of God taking on flesh and becoming one of us.

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Additional Articles and Resources on Advent and the Nativity Additional Articles and Resources on Advent and the Nativity

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    2017 Byzantine Christmas Concert in Honor of Archbishop Demetrios

    Musicians: Choirs and Chanters

    A Byzantine Christmas Concert Honoring Archbishop Demetrios, Geron of America, Celebrating his 50 Years as a Bishop at Merkin Concert Hall, NYC on December 2, 2017. Performers included the Archdiocesan Women's Byzantine Choir of St. Kassiani, the Archdiocesan Youth Choir, and the Archdiocesan Byzantine Choir. Read More

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    Celebrating the Nativity as a Family

    Families

    As we enter into the season of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ’s Nativity, we pray that our hearts would be fitting mangers—containing the Christ Child to experience the true joy and peace that comes from His birth. Christ is Born! Glorify Him! Read More

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    Christmas - Exploring the Feasts of the Orthodox Christian Church

    Video

    In this video, we explore the significance of Christ’s birth, as God becomes flesh. We also explore the various traditions through which the Orthodox Church continues to celebrate the great event. Read More

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    Gifts in Silence

    Center for Family Care

    It must have been unimaginable for Mary and Joseph, preparing to give birth to the Son of God. There were no baby showers, decorating nurseries or registering for gifts, just a long donkey ride to Bethlehem to register for King Herod’s census. They were alone in that cave in Bethlehem, except for a few simple animals and the far away star to tell of His birth. Sometimes God’s greatest gifts come initially with relative silence and little fanfare. Read More

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    Giving and Receiving

    Center for Family Care

    We are an indulgent society. If we want something, we get it. So, how do we teach our children to give generously and receive humbly in an age of materialism? How do we let them experience the grace that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ described when he said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35)? Read More

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    Hymns of Nativity

    Audio

    Listen to the Hymns of Nativity Read More

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    Let's Celebrate: The 12 Days of Christmas

    Center for Family Care

    The presents have been opened, the food has been eaten, and the Christmas tree is really starting to shed—yes, your house is showing the effects of Christmas Day. But while the “holiday season” may be winding down—for Christians the Christmas season is just getting started. You’ve heard of the 12 days of Christmas, right? This is when they begin! Read More

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    Nativity of Christ Brochure

    Outreach and Evangelism Ministries

    The brochure reminds us what the Feast of Christ's Nativity means to us as Orthodox Christians and encourages us to remember Christ during the Christmas season. Read More

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    Nativity Welcome Banner

    Outreach and Evangelism Ministries

    "Christ is Born, Glorify Him" Nativity banner. Read More

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    Our Journey to Bethlehem

    Advent Fast

    We are about to take a journey. Whether one is a devout Christian or doesn’t know Christ at all, we are all about to take a journey that will see Christmas decorations go up, lines at the malls get long, and stress levels go up. Such is the modern celebration of Christmas. Read More

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    Potholes on the Way to Bethlehem: Navigating the Stress of the Nativity Season

    Center for Family Care

    This webinar from the Center for Family Care discusses the stress of the Nativity season and how to navigate the potholes. Read More

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    Preparing for Our Lord's Nativity

    Center for Family Care

    Learn the history and hymns of the feast of our Lord's nativity and how a family can prepare to celebrate the feast. Read More

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    Preparing for the Nativity

    Department of Religious Education (DRE)

    The Internet School of Orthodox Studies Fall 1998 series of 90 minute educational classes are intended to be examination of the Old Testament prophets, as well as the hymns and prayers of some of the feasts of the Church. This series is presented by Rev. Dr. Frank Marangos. Read More

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    The Icon of the Nativity: Images Foretold by the Prophets

    Outreach and Evangelism Ministries

    These resources explain the theology and symbolism depicted in icon of the Nativity of Christ. Read More

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    The Tree of Jesse: A Traditional Lesson Plan

    Department of Religious Education (DRE)

    The Tree of Jesse: A Traditional Lesson Plan, by Fr. Andrew George, is an advent activity for home, groups, or church school. Read More

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    What Shall We Offer?

    Center for Family Care

    Christmas morning is here. Your little ones awaken at the crack of dawn—if not earlier—and eagerly run through the house screaming “Let’s open our presents!” Does this sound familiar? Big business partnered with media has done a tremendous job of teaching our children what they want Christmas to be about—presents and lots of them! What have we done to teach our children the true meaning of Christmas? Read More

Fasting Guidelines

Check out the Online Chapel Calendar for fasting guidelines or carry the fasting guidelines on your mobile device with the Daily Readings app!

 
 
 

Be the Bee

Nativity Meditations Nativity Meditations