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Wed Apr 21, 2010 4:51 pm

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Of all the beautiful traditions of Christmas, few are so ancient in meaning and so rich in symbolism as the Candy Cane.

From the beginning of the tradition of the Christmas Tree, it was customary to decorate the tree with symbols of the newborn Christ. Candles represented the Light of the World, the Star recalled that first Christmas night, and the shepherd's crook symbolized the humble shepherds in the fields near Bethlehem who were first to receive the news, "Unto You is Born a Savior."

Christmas tree decorations in Europe, from which our tradition comes, were customarily made of food, principally cookies and candy. This symbolically expresses thanks for "Our Daily Bread" as well as providing a Christmas treat for the children. Thus, the shepherds crook becomes a candy cane.

As time went on, many ornaments took a more permanent nature but the Candy Cane retains the original use and meaning of Christmas Tree ornaments.

Candy Canes on the Christmas tree symbolize the Shepherds in the fields on that first Christmas night, shepherds who heard the angel chorus and came to worship at the crib of the newborn King. They are also sign of our thanks to God for the food he has given us all during the year, and not least of all, they are an inexpensive and delightful Christmas treat for the family.

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