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Dear catholic.com visitors: This website from Catholic Answers, with all its many resources, is the world's largest source of explanations for Catholic beliefs and practices. A fully independent, lay-run, 501(c)(3) ministry that receives no funding from the institutional Church, we rely entirely on the generosity of everyday people like you to keep this website going with trustworthy , fresh, and relevant content. If everyone visiting this month gave just $1, catholic.com would be fully funded for an entire year. Do you find catholic.com helpful? Please make a gift today. SPECIAL PROMOTION FOR NEW MONTHLY DONATIONS! Thank you and God bless.

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The Origins of Christmas

In this episode of Catholic Answers Live, we unravel the origins of Christmas, the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. In this episode, we explore the history behind the term “Christ-mass,” dispel myths about Christmas being a pagan holiday, and discuss the proper name for the nativity scene. Michael Barber delves into the historical significance of the Christmas feast compared to other liturgical celebrations, shedding light on its unique place in the Christian calendar. We also ponder the biblical narrative surrounding the shepherds’ visit to Jesus and whether they had all their sheep with them. Join us for a fascinating exploration of the traditions and history that make Christmas a beacon of joy and hope for Christians worldwide on Catholic Answers Live.

Questions Covered:

  • 18:57 - When did Christians actually start calling it “Christ-mass”?
  • 29:33 - Isn’t Christmas originally a pagan holiday for the birth of the Sun?
  • 42:55 - What’s the proper name for the nativity scene?
  • 44:29 - Historically, what has the ranking of the Christmas feast been compared to others like Pentecost and Easter?
  • 47:19 - When the shepherds visited Jesus, did they have all their sheep with them?
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