Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Hello and welcome to NOLA Catholic Parenting podcasts. NOLA Catholic Parenting podcasts are a natural progression of our weekly column in the Clarion Herald and our three-times-a week blog written by Catholic moms and dads who are raising their children in our faith. The podcasts will share our thoughts, experiences and challenges as Catholic parents every other week at and Thanks for listening. If you have a topic you would like covered, please email

Dec 10, 2019

Episode #6

Host Christine Bordelon, associate editor of the Clarion Herald Catholic newspaper, talks to NOLA Catholic Parenting bloggers and columnists Sarah McDonald and Gaby Smith about Catholic traditions during Advent leading up to Christmas.

:15 – Sarah: Everyone is happier December!

:35 – Gaby’s love language is giving gifts and so enjoys Christmas present giving.

:50 – When Sarah’s kids say it is Christmas season, she gently reminds them that they are Catholic it’s Advent season.

1:14 – Christine mentions how hope and anticipation fill everyone’s life this time of year.

1:32 – Gaby has relatives out of town but stays close to home for Christmas and travels for New Year.

1:42 – Sarah is one of five children and said her family tries to keep Christmas focused on home where everyone comes home for Christmas. They keep the Christmas spirit all the way to the Epiphany.

2:28 – We anticipate the birth of the Lord. Christine says someone big is coming – Jesus Christ. Some activities such as caroling and lighting the Advent wreath are easy to do as a family.

3:30 – Sarah says parishes are now embracing the Advent wreath tradition. She says she lights her family’s wreath every night with her family at dinner.

4:40 – Parishes put together Advent wreaths for parishioners for a donation. Gaby said her mother-in-law makes sure she keeps the tradition.

5:14 – Sarah said she buys new candles every year because by the end of Advent the candle you lit the first is so little. In 2018, Sarah started a new tradition with her family. She found ceramic Jesus’ at her parish’ craft fair. It had a separate bag of hay. When the kids’ did a good deed, they would put a piece of hay in the manger, so a soft, comfortable manger would be awaiting Jesus on his birth on Christmas Day. They would discuss the It helps them to focus on preparing for the Lord and the idea of Christian kindness – people for others.

6:46 – Christine puts out her first Nativity set bought at Sears and her grandmother’s ceramic nativity. “It’s a beautiful way to remember a loved one and celebrate Christ’s birth.”

7:38 – Gaby said her family when she was young would hold out putting baby Jesus in the manger at midnight – she and her brother alternated every year – and could open presents her parents gave them, and EWTN was on in the background with Midnight Mass from the Vatican.

7:56 – Sarah said in In Italy, there’s the Bambinelli Sunday (the third Sunday in Advent – Gaudete Sunday) where children and families bring baby Jesus to St. Peter’s Square and the Pope would bless the baby Jesus from the window of his Apostolic Palace and then they would go home. Her husband is very Italian and keeps the traditions alive. Brought their baby Jesus.

8:52 – Christine; Bene wrapping baby Jesus up. Sarah and Gaby’s parents and they just hid him until Christmas Day.

9:24 – Gaby’s first Chrsitmas together with new husband. Her grandfather is 93 and lives 2 hours away, so she’s been going to his house the day before Christmas and spends time with him to go to Mass, watch football eat.

10:07 – Invite those listeners to share their Christmas traditions.