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Foundations For Our Future #48

Foundations for Our Future (48)

by: The Reverened Dr. Jon Shuler

 

There was a special day in England long before Christmas had come to be so central and it is called St. Stephen’s Day. Always celebrated on the 26th day of December, it reminds believers that the story of Christ does not leave us long at the manger. Stephen was the first follower of Jesus to die for his faith. (Acts 7:54-60) His death is not a part of Christmas story, but its roots in the church’s memory are so deep that it stays in the Liturgical Calendar. He was said to be “a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 6:5)

It was not long after Stephen was chosen to be one of the first seven deacons that he began to be revealed as a powerful preacher. It was his preaching that led to his martyrdom, but he is also remembered because he was chosen to serve the poor and needy. He is associated with Christmas in England now because his feast day became known as “Boxing Day.” It was then that families shared gifts with those not a part of the immediate family, especially those who served them. The feast of Christmas was too wonderful to keep to themselves. It had to be shared with all those they cared about and loved.

How might we share today some of our Christmas joy with others? How can we keep on sharing the feast?