Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas

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Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas by Ace Collins

Stories Behind the Great Traditions of ChristmasStars: *****

Zondervan (2003) Reissue (2018)
Religion/Holidays/Christmas & Advent
198 pages

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Summary: The cheer of a crackling hearth fire. Colorful cards from friends and loved ones. An evergreen tree festooned with ornaments. The golden traditions of Christmas—gifts, wreaths, stockings, carols, mistletoe, and more—infuse our celebration of the season with meaning and glowing memories. And, in ways you may not realize, they point us to the birth of Christ. Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas reveals the people, places, and events that shaped the best-loved customs of this merriest of holidays.

Here are spiritual insights, true-life tales, and captivating legends to intrigue you and your family and bring new luster and depth to your celebration of Jesus’ birth. Discover how • after eighteen centuries of all but ignoring the event, churches began to open the door for believers to commemorate Jesus’ incarnation. • the evergreen tree, once a central theme in the worship practices of pagan cultures, came to represent the everlasting love of God. • the magi’s three gifts—gold, frankincense, and myrrh—are filled with spiritual symbolism. The traditions of Christmas lend beauty, awe, and hope to the holiday, causing people all over the world to anticipate it with joy. The stories in this book will warm your heart as you rediscover the true and eternal significance of Christmas.

Stories Behind the Great Traditions of Christmas

I loved this book. I was expecting it to cover the Christian meanings behind the holiday traditions because its from a Christian publisher but the book was very honest and explained the pagan meanings behind the holidays and how they were transformed into Christian symbols. I think we can be honest about their beginnings and still think of them in Christian terms now. Some books or websites pretend they always had Christian meanings. I was very impressed by this.

I found the book fascinating and even read parts of it out loud to my 7 year old who also found it interesting. I had to explain parts of it to him of course because the book is designed for adults but the background of things we see every year is something we should know but don’t. I thought I knew a lot about the background of Christmas things but I was shocked to see how much I didn’t know.

The most shocking to me was the history behind the Twelve Days of Christmas song. I had no idea it was originally created with a Christian meaning to teach Christian concepts without being caught (when it was illegal to talk about Christianity.) When at the back of the book I saw an advertisement for another book by the same author: Stories Behind the Best-Loved Songs of Christmas I just knew I had to get it and I’ll be buying it soon so I have it for next year.

Every chapter was captivating, and that’s rare. I consider it a must read for the Christmas season.

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.