The fifth day of christmas, December 29
The Feast of St. Thomas Becket
Notice: This is the fifth day of Christmas, December 29, which is the Feast of St. Thomas Becket. But it is also the first Sunday after Christmas, which makes it the Feast of the Holy Family. If you would rather celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family today, just click here, and you can come back to Thomas Becket tomorrow. We've kept December 30 as the Feast of the Holy Family on this site this year, but that may change. Feel free to email us if you have a suggestion about how best to approach this next year.
- Make use of some of the resources on the tabs below (carols, reflections, scripture, literature, etc.)
- Watch or read Murder in the Cathedral by T.S. Eliot (versions of the play can be found on YouTube). Alternatively, read the play together.
- Get in touch with your inner Anglophile and do something British (though arguably we've been doing that throughout). Never had plum pudding? Now's the time to look up the recipe and try it. If you haven't already, go online and watch the Queen's annual Christmas Day speech. Locate some Christmas crackers or eat fish and chips. (This may not be as meaningful if you live in the UK.)
- Group Activity: In honor of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales (about a story contest during a pilgrimage to Becket's shrine) spend time writing a one-page story on a piece of paper. It can be based on a story you've heard elsewhere, but add your own touches to it. Next, sit in a circle and write a short description of the life and/or appearance of the person to your right (about a paragraph). Once you've all done this, read each others' stories out loud and then try to match the description of someone with the story they wrote. Finally, vote on the best story and give the winner some food as a prize. For an extra challenge, feel free to do all of the above in verse.
- Spend time in prayer for leaders, both in the Church and throughout the world.
- Give one of the gifts you did not give on Christmas Day.
- "Relic" gift: Give a gift to someone else that reminds them of you or of someone (especially someone who has passed on) that you both want to remember.
- NO CASH OPTION: Make five golden rings to give to five of your friends (and then secretly forge a ruling ring to bend their will to yours). Just kidding. Find something outside that is blooming (or still green/colorful) and give it as a gift, along with written-out wishes for the coming year. (This may not be as meaningful if you live in the Southern Hemisphere.)