Bishop Drainey: What about the Twelve Days of Christmas?
Blogged by James Preece on 27th December 2010
Bishop Terence Patrick Drainey has lost something...
It has always seemed strange to me that we spend so much time preparing for Christmas and yet as soon as Christmas Day is over, we are already trying to forget it and move on with life. With the recession and having to cut back, the timing was somewhat slower this year, but generally you can guarantee that as soon as October is moving out the Christmas trimmings are moving in. I suppose you can lay some blame at the door of the Church for that; there has always been the tradition of spending a month preparing for Christmas in the season of Advent. So then, what about the Twelve Days of Christmas? Where have they gone?
It is interesting that the Church also seems to be in something of a hurry. Yes there are indeed the Twelve Days of Christmas culminating in the three Kings arriving to offer their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
What about the Twelve Days of Christmas? Where have they gone?
Seriously? Is he joking?
I'll tell you where they've gone! You see, here in Middlesbrough Diocese the twelve days of Christmas have been reduced to eight by the decision to move the Feast of the Epiphany to the nearest Sunday.
Sorry kids, but four days of Christmas have been cancelled.
Who is responsible for this decision? Don't blame the Bishop's Conference! Archbishop Vincent Nichols is not Bishop of Middlesbrough, Bishop McMahon is not Bishop of Middlesbrough and neither is Archbishop Patrick Kelly. No. Bishop Drainey is Bishop of Middlesbrough and he is personally responsible.
Bishop Drainey cancelled four days of Christmas and then he writes to us all asking "What happened to the Twelve Days of Christmas?"
I wrote to Bishop Drainey back in the summer to ask him about the holy days of obligation and received no reply.
Perhaps the Twelve days of Christmas got lost in the mail with my letter?