Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus, Who came down from Heaven for the salvation of mankind.

Almost immediately after Adam and Eve committed the Original Sin and fell from grace, God promised that He would send a Savior to make things right and restore the relationship between God and man.

The entire Old Testament is filled with stories of God’s chosen people, men and women who were waiting for this Messiah because they they knew they were not able to save themselves.

The New Testament begins with the events leading up to the arrival of this long-awaited Savior, Jesus Christ. In God’s plan for the salvation of the world, He would allow his only-begotten Son to die for our sins.

But before He could suffer and die on the Cross, the Son of God would need to have a body that could be scourged and crucified.

The Second Person of the Trinity, Who was made flesh by the power of the Holy Spirit at the Annunciation, was born of the Virgin Mary in a stable in Bethlehem for this reason.

The Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord or Christmas on December 25, a Holy Day of Obligation for Catholics.

The story of Christmas:

God was born into our human family:

Christmas in Bethlehem:

And Joseph too went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David that is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. While they were there, the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. Now there were shepherds in that region living in the fields and keeping the night watch over their flock. The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were struck with great fear. The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a Savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

Luke 2: 4-14

God had come in the flesh:

The birth of Jesus is a historical fact:

Seeing the salvation of God:

God could have come clothed in glory, in splendour, in light, in power, to frighten us, to make our eyes widen with wonder. No! He came as the smallest of beings, the most fragile, the weakest. Why this? But so that no one was ashamed to approach Him, so that no one was afraid, so that everyone could really have Him close, go close to Him, no longer have any distance between us and Him. There was an effort on God’s part to immerse Himself, to sink inside us, so that each one, I mean each one of you, can give Him the familiar, can have confidence, can approach Him, can feel thought of by Him, loved by Him: Look, this is a great word! If you understand this, if you remember what I’m telling you, you have understood all of Christianity.

Pope Paul VI, Homily, 25 December 1971

God asks us to choose between two kings:

Elements of Jesus’ birth anticipate his passion and death:

Jesus was born in a humble stable, into a poor family. Simple shepherds were the first witnesses to this event. In this poverty Heaven’s glory was made manifest. The Church never tires of singing the glory of this night: The Virgin today brings into the world the Eternal and the earth offers a cave to the Inaccessible. The angels and shepherds praise Him and the magi advance with the star, for You are born for us, Little Child, God eternal!

Catechism of the Catholic Church 525

Remembering God’s generosity in the stuff of Christmas:

Finding Christ in the symbols of Christmas:

The Truth, Goodness, and Beauty of the Catholic Church

Really loving and seeking God:

Share this page with friends and family to start a conversation about your faith.

Don’t miss a post. Learn more about the Catholic Church and strengthen your Catholic faith.

Find more Fiercely Catholic video issues here.

Subscribe here.

Book a Fiercely Catholic program at your next conference, retreat, or other Catholic event.