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Christmas Season

New Zealand has a characteristic way of celebrating this our summer feast. Birth is all around us. There is newness and re-creation. Families get together and there are summer holidays. It is these things, rather than the Northern winter, which need to be alluded to in our liturgies.

Rather than seeing January 6 as beginning a new Epiphany Season, contemporary liturgy usually observes from December 25 through January 6 (or preferably the Sunday following)¬† as a festival of the Incarnation and Manifestation. This period can be seen as the Christmas/Epiphany Season. It is usually a low period in New Zealand’s church life. Christmas in New Zealand is celebrated more by anticipation in various special services leading up to Christmas Day.

The Epiphany, although a Principal Feast in the Prayer Book, tends to be neglected when it falls on a weekday, and in that case it is better transferred to the Sunday before January 6.

Liturgical Colour:White, Gold, or “best.”

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