Posted December 4th, 2013 | Dinner Discussion, Prayers

 

 

 Presentation and Presents

 

My mom, being Mrs. Clause for her youngest grandson 2010.

St. Nicholas is the man who children are expecting on Christmas Eve, but his feast day is actually this Friday, December 6th.  You know what that means?  PRESENTS! That’s right, be sure and give your children and loved ones a gift on Friday in honor of the Feast of St. Nicholas. They may be surprised, but definitely happy.  Honestly, who doesn’t like receiving gifts?  This can also give you an opportunity to explain how Nicholas would use his own personal funds to anonymously help the poor, making it easy to see how the Saint became Santa.

Great gift ideas for your priests, family, friends and church members. Click here.

Presents are no doubt an important part of this holiday season.  But it’s important not to let commercialism and out-of-control consumerism take over this Holy Season of Advent.

Remember, we just began the 1st week of Advent in preparation for Christmas.  It’s not Christmas yet, no matter what commercials and stores have been telling us since Halloween.  Also, we must not forget that receiving Christ in our hearts is the greatest gift we receive. Even in all our busyness, we can’t forget to prepare a gift for Jesus! During Advent, we are preparing for HIS birthday.  We can’t forget that!  I’m sure St. Nicholas would agree.

Me with an almost ‘life-sized’ St. Nicholas. I say almost because I was definitely taller!

One gift that Christ seeks is our presence, that is, simply being present to Him. In fact, the word “presence” is what describes the gift of the Eucharist.  God is present to us through that sacred food, which we receive at Mass.

Priests praying before the Tabernacle, which contains the Blessed Sacrament – The Presence of God.

In honor of St. Nicholas, consider how we can give a gift to Jesus by being present to him.  That means paying attention to Him and allowing our humanity to reflect our faith in God and our care for each other.  It means, paying attention to how our facial expressions, tone of voice, body language, and even our dress because they show how God’s presence dwells in our hearts and souls.  Giving a gift to Jesus could also mean being more present to God in prayer, by being ready and on time for Church, taking time throughout the day to pray, and perhaps even visiting the Blessed Sacrament to be in God’s Eucharistic presence. And of course, we need to pay attention while saying a prayer before we eat – to recognize that God is present at our meal when we invite him with every Grace Before Meals.

In the chef and food world, presence and presentation are great indicators to success and deliciousness.  Food presented well and chefs who are present to the hungry are definite gifts in the culinary culture. It’s true for believers as well.

New friends from a presentation that I gave to the HHS Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood Presentation June 2013.

St. Nicholas’ feast day reminds us of how this season is all about giving presents just by being present to God and to each other.  We just need to remember to work on our presentation of faith to others and to be more even more present to Jesus in prayer, i.e., not bored!

Happy and hungry campers at one of my Catholic Culinary Presentations.

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Food for Thought:

  • What is the gift that you will present to Jesus on his Birthday?
  • What’s your favorite gift that you received from Santa Clause?
  • How will you be an image of God’s presence in our world?

Please post your comments and response to these questions below.  Your posts, feedback and questions are so helpful to our movement. Thanks for taking the time to talk with us!

Happy St. Nicholas feast day! Celebrate with presents in God’s presence!

Let us pray:

 

Father in Heaven, in this first season of Advent, give us the Grace to remember what great gift You give to us:  being present to us!  You, the Great “I Am” are always with us. Help us to remember that, to celebrate that, and to reflect Your presence in our lives by our words, example and our very life. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

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Posted in Dinner Discussion, Prayers | 2 Comments

2 Responses to “Dinner Discussions: Presentation and Presents”

  • I am a convert, and I love the feast of St. Nicholas. We have always made it special if even only in small ways for our children. The reminder to be truly present is a good one and thank you. The days of Advent can become so overwhelming with all the hustle and rush of holiday parties and activities, being present is the reminder I needed. An ice storm is coming later today which will ensure our remaining tucked away at home on this feast day. If we can make it to Adoration we will, otherwise it is a great opportunity to capture this feast day with presence – thank you!

    Posted by Kathy@9peas on December 5th, 2013 at 8:17 am.
  • I want to give my whole self to Jesus. Complete surrender!
    The best gift I got from Santa was a guitar when I was in 6th grade.
    I will try to be an image of Christ by trying to love with His heart, see
    with His eyes, speak with His words and serve with His hands.
    Happy St. Nicholas! God Bless You!

    Posted by Melissa Conway on December 6th, 2013 at 1:28 am.

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