At every Holy Latin Mass, the Last Gospel is read. In it we read;
In him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. John 1:4-5
It is a wonderful thing that the Catholic Church, long time ago, began celebrating Christmas in the darkest time of the year. Dec. 21 is the darkest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere of the world.
He also took him into his arms, and blessed God, and said: Now thou dost dismiss thy servant, O Lord, according to thy word in peace; Because my eyes have seen thy salvation,
Which thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples:A light to the revelation of the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel. Luke 2:28-32
Candles were put on Christmas trees because their lights represented flowers that blossomed on the trees that Christmas night. Also, it represents Joseph of Arimathea’s rod that flowered.
And again Isaias saith: There shall be a root of Jesse; and he that shall rise up to rule the Gentiles, in him the Gentiles shall hope. Romans 15:12
So now we see, instead of candles, electric lights on Christmas trees and houses everywhere. This began when incandescent lights were invented. Edward H. Johnson, (an associate of Thomas Edison), on December 22, 1882, put 80 electric lights on a tree at his home on Fifth Avenue in New York.
Then in 1895, U.S. President Grover Cleveland put electric lights on the White House tree. But most people still used candles until the 1930’s because these lights were so expensive.
The lighting of Rockefeller Center Christmas tree made it even more famous.2014 Rockefeller Christmas Tree Lighting
So when we see the Christmas tree lights and house lighted up, we need to remember Jesus, the Light of the world. And we see a Christmas tree we remember that Jesus is the fruit of the Jesse Tree. We are so blessed to be traditional Catholics and have all these beautiful Catholic Christmas traditions.
The original author of this blog passed away in July of 2016. RIP Father Carota.