The Twelfth Day Of Christmas

The evening of this day is Twelfthnight, the end of the Christmas season and the prelude to the season of Epiphany or “manifestation,” which celebrates the moments when we become newly aware of God at work in our world, meeting us even in the midst of our everyday lives.

Twelthnight was formerly kept as a time of merry-making and is associated with many old customs such as taking down the Christmas decorations. In Herefordshire there was a tradition of lighting 12 bonfires, representing the Twelve Apostles, to secure a blessing on the fruits of the earth, and similar practices prevailed elsewhere. The ‘Twelfth Cake’ was an ornamented cake made for the occasion, containing a bean or coin, the finder of which became the ‘King’ or ‘Queen’ of the festivities.

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