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gift ideas for the 12 days of christmas


Gifts ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas are hardly new things to consider but can prove a challenge to someone who doesn’t understand the true meaning of the old Christmas carol.

The 12 Days of Christmas refers no to the twelve days before Christmas, but the twelve days following Christmas Eve. These days are the days leading up to the epiphany, the date when Christ’s birth was confirmed by the magi (the Three Kings or the Three Wise Men). Many Orthodox believers celebrate the 12 Days of Christmas by the giving of gift items throughout the 12 days, while many Christian faiths celebrate Christmas but give gifts on the 6th of January to commemorate the epiphany. Many historians believe that the traditional Christmas carol, the “Twelve Days of Christmas” is a teaching of the catechism for children. Giving gifts in keeping with the 12 days can be done in keeping with religious philosophies if they are understood. The following is a listing of the religious teachings of a time honored Christmas carol.

A partridge in a pear tree is God’s son, Jesus Christ. Gifts befitting this “Day” are pictures of Jesus, crucifixes or items relating directly to the Christ.

Two Turtle Doves are the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. Bibles or study guides for the Bible are appropriate.

Three French Hens refer to the Book of Corinthians which features the Three Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope and Love. Consider gifts from the Book of Corinthians.

Four Calling Birds are the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John which teach the Good News of God the Father. Books which encourage the study of the Gospels are wonderful.

Five Golden Rings refers to the first five books of the Old Testament which teach the failures of man and of God’s benevolent creation of man as the light of the world. Consider giving items which reaffirm God’s love of man.

Six Geese a-Laying are the six days during which God created the earth and the proclamation that God is the Creator. You could give items which encourage keeping Sundays holy.

Seven Swans a-Swimming refers to the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, prophecy, ministry, teaching, exhortation, giving, leading and compassion. Any item which promotes these gifts is perfect.

Eight Maids a-Milking is a reference to the eight Beatitudes: Blessed are those poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the poor in heart, the peacemakers and those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. You would want to give items which are reminders of the Beatitudes.

Nine Ladies Dancing are the Fruits of the Holy Spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Rosaries and religious tokens are very nice reminders of the Fruits.

Ten Lords a-Leaping are the Ten Commandments. Scrolls of the Commandments or miniature versions are perfect items for day ten.

Eleven Pipers Piping are the all the apostles except Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Christ with a kiss. Gifts which serve as reminders of Jesus’ apostles (such as figurines or medals) are lovely items to commemorate the eleventh day.

Twelve Drummers Drumming refers to the Apostle’s Creed. Consider giving items which bring the Creed to mind.

An understanding of the real reason for the Twelve Days of Christmas will help you with gift ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas.



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