Celebrated on January 3, this feast is a new addition to the Liturgical Calendar. This celebration reminds us that the name Jesus means Savior. We rejoice at his birth because he is God’s son, because through him God is with us here on earth (Emmanuel, another of his names), and because he redeems us from sin through his sacrificial death.
One way that adults and older children can celebrate this day is to promise never to misuse or abuse the name of God or Jesus. Children notice when others use language they have been asked to avoid; this celebration can help them remember that God asks us to respect his name and that of his son.
I found a fun activity that reinforces the special attention we should pay to Jesus’ name at the advent post from Michelle at Hubbard’s Cupboard. On her Advent page, you will find a whole calendar of Advent activities, some of which I wrote about in my first Advent post. Her craft for December 11 (scroll down to where it says “Jesus is Named and Presented in the Temple”), is perfect for The Most Holy Name of Jesus. She includes two links to pages you can print with “Jesus” in broad block letters. Para cambiar el nombre al español, dibuja un acento encima de la "U".
I printed both pages, but my children have so far only completed the page from the second link. We will decorate the other page, which includes the words from Luke 2:21, on January 3rd. I gave my children glitter and sparkly things to glue onto the letters as she suggests, but they also decided to color, paste objects, and add their own embellishments.
We may even attach our pages to poster board or cardboard for durability and hang them on the wall as a reminder throughout the year.
We decorated the second page on January 3rd. I think these would work well as interior pages for January lapbooks dedicated to The Most Holy Name. Hmmmnnn… we may have to make some of those.
Here is the updated photo from our completed stable and manger scenes that now include the baby Jesus. You can see the empty ones at this post.
The next major event of the Christmas season is the Epiphany of the Lord, celebrated on January 6th (celebrated on January 8th in 2012), when we commemorate the Visit of the Magi. The link up for this event is hosted by Martha at una vida católica en construcción. (Unfortunately, the Epiphany Link up is no longer available for viewing).
My post for Epiphany will explain how we will construct a special Star of Bethlehem to hang over our nativity so it can guide the Magi to Jesus. We have a statue of the Holy Family that we actually keep out year round, and this year we received a statue of the Magi that is nearly equal in size as a gift. We need a large ornamental star to complement this scene. Check back soon to see how it turns out.
In 2013 I am linking with:
Catholic Bloggers Link up Blitz, Better Mom Monday, Welcome Home, Keeping Christ in Christmas, Faith Formation in Young Children, For the Kids Friday, Saints and Scriptures Sunday, Making It Count