The Big Timber Pioneer (Big Timber, Mont.) 1983-current, December 19, 2003, Image 13

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Page 14 — BIG TIMBER (MT) PIONEER — Week of December 19-25, 2003 C f m s t m f i s i i m i The institution ot the festival of the birth of the Savior is attributed by some authorities to Pope Telesphorus. who died A D. 138 In the early days of the Christian religion it was one of the most movable feasts, being often eon founded with the Epiphany and eelebrated by the eastern churches in April and May. In the Fourth centu­ ry the urgency of St. Cyril of Jerusalem obtained from Pope Julius I. an order for an investigation to be made concerning the day of Christ's nativity. The result of the inquiry, made by theologians o f the East and the West, was an agreement upon the twenty-fifth of December. As told in the gospel of St. Luke. Christ was born in the night Therefore, divine service is performed on the night of December 24-25. It is the custom in Roman Catholic churches to usher in Christmas day by the celebration of three masses, one at midnight, the Red, green set Yule scene The traditional colors ol the Christmas season are red and green Yet these colors have meant differ­ ent things to different people over the ages. Color has been used as the symbol ol abstract ideas from time immemorial In early and medieval Christian art colors had a mystic or symholic meaning. Red indicated passion. In its good sense it was a symbol of divine energy and love and the cre­ ative penver of the Holy Spirit: in its had sense it was a sign of hate. In that meaning it became an emblem of Satan. Emerald green is often the sym­ bol of hope anil growth in many Christian paintings Colors played an important role in medieval magic and superstition For example, the famous \philoso­ pher's store.\ which the alchemists thought would turn base metals into gold and cure all diseases, was thought to be colored rod. Red was also a favorite curative color in more recent superstitions. In Indonesia, the people think a piece of bright red coral will keep its owner's teeth in good order, and there are people every where who are '.ure a person owning a ruby will live to a ripe old age. Cueen w as a vicrcd \_olor among die ancient and medieval Egyptians who wore it as a symbol of hope and the joy of spring. The Muslims ear­ ned this symbolism throughout the Middle East, and the faithful, on returning from the pilgrimage to Mecca, wear a green turban Reprinted from the December 19, 1963 issue of the Big Timber Pioneer. May all good things come your way this holiday season. from e v e ry o n e a t Sw e e t G rass Conoco & Sw e et G rass Tire second at early dawn, and the third in the morning. This custom dates from the sixth century. Preparatory to Christmas the hells are rung at midnight through­ out England and the continent After the solemn celebration of the mass in the churches of the continent, which arc magnificently adorned lor the festival, it is customary for the worshippers to partake of a collation. Reprinted from the December 8, 1921 issue of the Big Timber Pioneer. C h k l s i m a s g a m e s Mistletoe. Hang it up. Form a circle. A slipper is required. Also a nice, slippery floor. The first player slides the slipper He tries to land it under the mistletoe. If he fails anoth­ er makes the attempt. If lie succeeds there is a lively scramble It con­ cerns the young lady toward whom the slipper points. She must seize it and get away before caught. Then the guests are given humorous gilts (previously wrapped), and are admitted (one at a tune) to the Christmas room to deposit them in the stockings Another jolly game is played with Christinas stockings, a number of which are previously hung up These are placed in a separate room and the name oi the person for whom each is intended is concealed upon it Another Christmas slocking game calls for a huge stocking of lough tissue paper filled with toys of all kinds Each guest is blindfolded, given a light rod or cane, turned three tunes around and told to hit the hag. The first to break the slocking gives the signal for a general scram­ ble. each guest being supposed to get one of the trinkets or souvenirs dins scattered Reprinted from the December 8, 1921 issue o f the Big Timber Pioneer. Season’s ‘firsts’ are traced Shepherds watched, angels sang and wise men traveled far to behold the miracle o f the first Christmas. Since that holy night a multitude of legends and customs, both religious and secular, have developed as part of the holiday. Each legend was once told, each custom once observed for the first time, and though origins of many traditions are now lost in time, other Christmas ‘‘firsts\ have been record­ ed for posterity. There arc historical Christmas “firsts.\ attested by church records and by scientific research into the early years o f Christianity, as well as “firsts\ of later history and \firsts\ (hat blend (act with myth. Setting the date December 25 was first assigned as the date for the celebration of the Nativity in about the year 320 A.D. Since the New Testament was writ­ ten as religious instruction rather than history, the exact date of Christ’s birth is not known. The present day was selected as a means of unifying the observances of Christmas, “the mass of Christ \ Hanging stockings The story of the first Christmas slocking is associated with the real St Nicholas, a fourth century bishop known for hts many kind deeds. Wishing to present an anonymous gift to help the daughters of an impoverished merchant, he threw a bag of gold down the chimney, where it fell into a stocking hung up to dry. The legend is reflected in today's custom of tucking “gold”— an orange or tangerine—into the toe of a Christmas stocking. Trimming trees Trimmed Christmas trees first appeared in the United States proba­ bly during the American Revolution. Hessian soldiers with the British forces started the practice to relieve their nostalgia for their homeland. An early diary, written at Fort Dearborn. III., in 1804, relates the practice of trimming the Christmas tree with ornaments of the time. At the W hite House The first national community Christmas tree in the U.S. was placed on the White House lawn in 1923. while Calvin Coolidgc was president. The tree was a spruce from Cooltdgc’s native stale, Vermont. In the following year Coolidgc presided at a ceremony under the sponsorship of the American Forestry association, to urge the use of living Christmas trees. At the Round Table Traditionally. the first Christmas feast in England was held at the Round Table of King Arthur. While the specific date is undeter­ mined. references to the famous king in medieval legends have been traced back to as early as 6(X) A.D. Of wreaths Using wreaths as decorations at Christmas may he traced to the cus­ toms of Advent season, the four Sundays before Christmas—a time of preparation for the coming of the Christ child. Traditionally, the Advent wreath is made of evergreen brunches interlaced with red rib­ bons. It holds four candles. One can­ dle is lit at dusk on the first Sunday of Advent, two the next Sunday.threc the next and lour on the last Sunday before Christmas. The wreath may be placed on u door, set on a table or hung from the ceil­ ing. Reprinted from the December 19, 1963 issue of the Big Timber Pioneer. Jtappf Jfotidafi and ß*ä * k J u k * l f p * I k * M m * Wheetsmith F a b rications, Inc. 4 4 4 The Sweet Grass County Chamber of Commerce Wishes You A Safe, Happy Holiday and a Healthy, Prosperous New Year Randy M o o re Agent Big Timber 932-5473 F I N A N C I A L S E R V I C E S ¡Vfcrrv Christinas! • Life / Disability • Retirement Planning • Farm & Ranch • Estate Planning • Home / Ruto • commercial 201 M i I xxn I • P.O. Box 1170 Kigllmhtr. MT 59011 Stop in for a free Financial/lnsurancc review ♦S E C U R T IE S A S E R V IC E S O F F E R E D TH R O U G H E O U IT R U S T M A R K E T IN G S E R V I C E S . L L C ’ S i O O U N IV E R S ITY AVE. W E S T D E S M O I N E S . )A 5 0 2 6 6 , B 7 7 - 8 6 0 - 2 S 0 4 I T B e s t W i s h e s f o r a H a p p y H o l i d a y S e a s o n We will CLOSE at 2:00 pm Dec. 23rd for our employee party and remain CLOSED December 24 & 25 M erry C hristmas ! F R O S T Y F R E E Z \ t i May peace, love and happiness be yours during the Christmas season and throughout the coming year. C o n n e r ’ s C o n c r e t e S E A S O N S O R E E T I N O S MayThts Season Be filled \With. Jiapplness In AH ThatVou Do And MayThts Jiapplness Continue TheWhole YearThrough. i i i From the Officers, Directors 35» m e & Employees a t e i m a u w A m s m t s T Closed at Noon on Dec. 24th, Christm a s Eve

The Big Timber Pioneer (Big Timber, Mont.), 19 Dec. 2003, located at <>, image provided by MONTANA NEWSPAPERS, Montana Historical Society, Helena, Montana.