Home 9 Resource 9 Celebrating Christmastide | The Season of Christmas

A resource shared by

Dio Comms Team

Published on

December 18, 2023

The twelve days of Christmas that follow the joyous celebration on December 25th hold special significance for Catholics, marking a continued period of reflection and celebration. The days from December 25th to January 6th, known as the Feast of the Epiphany or Twelfth Night, provide a unique opportunity to immerse ourselves in the rich traditions and observances that extend the Christmas season.

Each day can become an opportunity for spiritual contemplation and festive gatherings. In essence, the twelve days following Christmas provide a meaningful extension of the initial jubilation, allowing us to savor the spiritual and communal aspects of this sacred season.


a unique opportunity to immerse ourselves in the rich traditions and observances that extend the Christmas season.

Five ways to celebrate Christmastide for you and your whānau

Continue the Celebrations

What are some ways we can fully immerse ourselves in the festive spirit of Christmastide?


✨ Keep your nativity scenes on display.
You may like to wait until the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. 


🎄 Don’t take down your tree straight away.
Consider leaving it up until the Feast of the Epiphany. 


💡 Keep your Christmas lights on each day as the day ends and the sky darkens.


🕯️ Light candles near your manger scene, perhaps while the family eats dinner.

Consider hosting Christmas parties AFTER Christmas day.

Arrange a Christmas party post-Christmas day to capitalise on the relaxed atmosphere. By choosing to host Christmas gatherings after the initial holiday rush, when people have concluded attending office, family, and friends’ events, you tap into a period of decreased stress and heightened downtime. This serves as a delightful reminder that the festive spirit of Christmas persists beyond its official date.

You might like to celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany and turn this into a potluck, reflecting the essence of the Epiphany story where participants contribute and share food, akin to the wise men presenting gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Jesus.

Commemorate the saints of the season

The liturgical Christmas season merits greater focus within our households. The period from Christmas Day to the Baptism of the Lord encompasses a series of celebratory and sacred days, providing a wonderful opportunity to celebrate your faith.

25 December – Christmas Day

26 December – Feast of St Stephen

27 December – Feast of St John, Apostle

28 December – Feast of The Holy Innocents

31 December – The Holy Family

1 January – Mary, the Holy Mother of God

The Epiphany of the Lord (celebrated on 7 January)

8 January – The Baptism of the Lord

This blog has some great suggestions for how to reflect on these different celebrations.

Distribute gifts throughout the entire Christmas season

While challenging for young children, this provides a chance to cherish every gift received. Package a box containing a word or Bible verse representing a gift from Jesus (such as love, joy, salvation). Unwrap this alongside other gifts daily or consider it as an alternative to open on each of the 12 days of Christmas.

Maybe you could open gifts from extended relatives on Christmas Day and save the family gift exchange until the Feast of the Epiphany, closing out the 12 days of Christmas.

Pray in the New (calendar) Year

Although the Church celebrates the liturgical New Year at the start of Advent, the start of a new calendar year is an opportunity to incorporate a practice of New Year’s prayers and blessings within the Catholic tradition, emphasising the significance of continuing the Christmas season into the New Year.

This prayer resource from Hallow covers the importance of prayers on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, including prayers from various popes. They also suggest ways to incorporate prayer into New Year’s resolutions.

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