My Christmas story this year is an excerpt from my current project, a novel about angels. Usually we view the Annunciation from Mary’s point of view. But how would the angel Gabriel have experienced it? Read on.
Christmas, I confess, is my favorite time of year. And I say this despite the fact that it is also the most painful.
This year, once again, the Lord cut down a Christmas tree for us with His own hand. It’s the tipmost top of a splendid mugo pine from across the street, which blew down in last week’s big wind.
He was taken up before their eyes, and a cloud hid Him from their sight. –Acts 1:9
The Chapel of the Ascension is a Christian and Muslim shrine believed to mark the last place on earth where Jesus stood before ascending into heaven.
Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” –John 21:12
Inside the Primacy of Peter, in the apse before the altar, is a rock reputed to be the one on which the risen Jesus served breakfast to His disciples.
When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread. –John 21:9
The last few chapters of this book introduce a brand new category that should elicit a shiver of wonder: stones known or touched by the risen Christ.
At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. –John 19:41
Our discussion of the stone relics associated with Easter would not be complete without mentioning the Garden Tomb.
He is not here; He has risen! –Luke 24:6
Beneath the larger of the two domes of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher is a rotunda known as the Anastasis, a Greek word meaning resurrection.
Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds. Taking Jesus’ body, they wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. –John 19:39-40
And they crucified Him. –Mark 15:24
Of the fourteen Stations of the Cross, the last five are in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher: Jesus is stripped; He is nailed to the cross; He dies; He is taken down; He is laid in the tomb.