Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Five things to remember on Dec. 5

1. Lots of old Christmas movies on TV this season. Among them are apt to be such favorites as It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, White Christmas and Polar Express. Check out reviews of 20 Christmas movies from the USCCB Office for Film and Broadcasting.

2. Stock up on treats for the Feast of St. Nicholas, celebrated Dec. 6. One custom is for children to leave their shoes outside their bedroom door before they go to sleep on Dec. 5 and to awaken the next morning to find a sweet surprise in their shoes. The generosity of the real St. Nicholas, a fourth century bishop, known for his charity, makes him the precursor of Santa Claus.

3. The Annual Retirement Fund for Religious collection is Dec. 8-9 in parishes nationwide. The latest blog post on the USCCB site muses on the nuns who formed me from childhood onwards.

4. Holiday time has many men shopping for engagement rings. In the excitement of getting ready for marriage, attending a marriage preparation program can seem like just one more tedious item on a couple’s pre-wedding checklist but it is one of the most important. The Catholic Church requires couples to undergo marriage preparation, and research shows the value of this requirement. The skills and behaviors learned in marriage prep classes have a shelf life well beyond the crucial first years of a marriage.

5. God loves you.

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