traditions: mistletoe

How many of you hang mistletoe over doorways or in your foyer? Custom says that if you are foundc473914d938d92fa589a19375e59a1a1 under the mistletoe, then you are to be kissed.

Being a romantic at heart, I haven’t been “caught” under the stuff myself and honestly, I hope to – one day. If not, I’ll live.

I had to laugh at this year’s marketing campaign with Caribou – they have napkins with pictures of mistletoe on them. In case you need mistletoe at a moment’s notice!  It’s charming, romantic and full of nostalgia, but there is so much more to mistletoe that what we think:

In Scandinavia, mistletoe has an ancient association with peace and reconciliation. Perhaps meeting under the mistletoe for a kiss was a result of this tradition.

In a world ravaged by revenge, vengeance and retribution, Christmas is the perfect time to resurrect themes of reconciliation. Christmas is about bridging the divide between earth and heaven; the way it was meant to be. Christmas is about seeing and celebrating the presence of divinity and sacredness in everyday life. It’s about God and humanity in a restored relationship. Christ came to reconcile us with God.

And from a biological standpoint, mistletoe is known as a keystone species in that it has a disproportionately pervasive influence over its community. That is a fabulous association for Christmas, for the church and for Christianity. We, too, are to have a similar influence over our communities working for justice, peace and community as we spread God’s gospel – His LOVE – to those around us.

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