You’ve probably heard of the song the Twelve Days of Christmas. This may or may not be news to you, but those twelve days do not lead up to Christmas. Instead they are a season that starts Christmas Day and ends today, January 5th. This evening will be the twelfth night (which you Shakespeare fans will find familiar) and is usually time of great revelry — a final chance to celebrate God with us.
Here at St. Peter’s we have kept these twelve days as a season when we celebrate the birth of Jesus, God’s coming to our world in human form to save us. We’ll leave you today to consider the twelve days of Christmas from two points of view. Merry Christmas!
On the first day of Christmas, a partridge in a pear tree,
on the second day of Christmas, two turtle doves,
on the third day of Christmas, three French hens,
on the fourth day of Christmas, four calling birds,
on the fifth day of Christmas, five gold rings,
on the sixth day of Christmas, six geese a-laying,
on the seventh day of Christmas, seven swans a-swimming,
on the eighth day of Christmas, eight maids a-milking,
on the ninth day of Christmas, nine ladies dancing,
on the tenth day of Christmas, ten lords a-leaping,
on the eleventh day of Christmas, eleven pipers piping,
on the twelfth day of Christmas, twelve drummers drumming.
Christ wounded on a cross,
three gifts of the Magi and parts to the Trinity,
four gospels which call to us across space and time,
five wounds of Christ and books of the Pentateuch,
six days of creation,
seven, the divine number of perfection,
eight, Christ rose on the eighth day,
nine fruits of the Spirit,
Ten Commandments by which to live,
eleven faithful disciples after the betrayal of Judas,
twelve articles in the creed and tribes of Israel.