Advent Traditions: Our Jesse Tree

I never really became interested in the Jesse Tree tradition until I saw some adorable cross-stitch ornaments at Princess’ godparents’ house.  I copied her pattern and during the Fall of 2005 I stitched every last one of them.  Back then Trooper and Rascal were tiny and uninterested in any holiday tradition (except Christmas lights and bells).  By the time they were older, I had managed to lose some of the ornaments and really didn’t feel like stopping my other projects to make more.  This year, however, as Advent would be three days old before any of our calendars would begin, I wondered whether we could find a list of Jesse Tree readings that could span all of Advent (my original pattern was for 25 days).  Lo and behold, there are plenty!

While planning our Jesse Tree, I borrowed the Scripture outline found here and added many elements found here, especially incorporating the O Antiphons in the latter half of December.   I drew the ornaments and Rascal colors one every morning after we read the Bible story.  Next I bring out the hole punch and we string a loop of Christmas ribbon through it.  Rascal then hangs it on the tree–a 3ft Fraser fir we picked up on Sunday.  We love real trees.  Here’s my outline for the first week of Advent, if you’re interested:

Wk 1 Sunday: Introduce the Jesse Tree — condensed prayers for blessing of the tree in the Magnificat Advent Companion–ornament: the tree itself

Wk 1 Monday: Creation– creation story — ornament: the world

Wk 1 Tuesday: Adam & Eve — the Fall and the promise of redemption– ornament: an apple

Wk 1 Wednesday: Noah — the Flood — ornament: Noah’s Ark + rainbow

Wk 1 Thursday: Abraham — the covenant — ornament: white Christmas lights (as Abraham’s descendants would be ‘as numerous as the stars’)

Wk 1 Friday: Issac — the sacrifice of Issac — ornament: bundle of wood

Wk 1 Saturday: Jacob — Jacob’s dream — ornament: ladder

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