October 30th, 2020

Holly and the manger


By Submitted Article on December 7, 2019.

Submitted by

Rev. Austin Fennell

RETIRED UNITED CHURCH MINISTER

One of the Advent/

Christmas symbols is the holly berry. One legend says that the Holy Family hid behind a holly bush in the course of their journey, fleeing to Egypt. It may also be that the crown of thorns, forced on Jesus’ head before his crucifixion, was made of the thorns of the holly bush, the red coming from his blood.

“The holly bears a berry

As red as any blood.

And Mary bore sweet Jesus Christ

To do poor sinners good.”

(English carol)

The manger is familiar to us from St. Luke’s story of Jesus’ birth as it tells of the infant being laid in a manger (Luke 2:7). Some will be familiar with the passage in Isaiah 1.3, “The ox knows its owner and the donkey knows the manger of its Lord, but Israel has not known me and my people have not understood me.”

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