A Christmas Tradition held on the Sunday before Christmas at St. Joseph’s Home is a Candle Festival of Lessons and Carols. On December 19, 2011, this celebration of the Light of Christ coming into our lives was presented in the chapel by a cast of Residents. After processing in, one Resident lit a candle on the altar as each one came forward to proclaim the Coming of the Messiah with readings from the Old Testament, and Advent of waiting for the Savior from Luke.
Carols were sung while Residents in wheelchairs, accompanied by angels, Kelly and Katlyn Stuck, grandchildren of Resident, Maria Stuck, brought significant gifts of a picture of our Lady, a plant, a crown, a globe, incense, a basket of bred representing Bethlehem, (the work means bread), and a rose, all placed at the foot of the altar.
Everyone stood for the Reading of the Gospel of St. Luke by Father Bob Scott. This year’s real Baby Jesus was Brendon Patrick McGrath, the two-month old grand-nephew of Sister Marie Bernadette and Resident, Sheila Crawford, who presented him to Mary, his mother, Patricia.
This beautiful, peacefully sleeping child warmed every heart and evoked the true meaning of Christmas. Everyone stood in the dark, enveloped in the spirit, singing “Silent Night while holding lit candles. The event ended with a proclamation of the Good News and a reading from St. John by Father Evan.
Candles clicked and eyes teared with joy as everyone stopped to watch, reluctant to leave. Even the cast had to be nudged to process out. Refreshments, remembrances and opinions were shared in the auditorium, with everyone eager to repeat the Pageant next year. No commercialism, a successful rendition of what Christmas is all about, one week early.
To view a slideshow of this event, please click here.