Sermon Illustrations


The Twelve Politically Correct Days of Christmas

On the 12th day of the Euro-centric-intolerant-fundamentalist-imposed midwinter festival, my current true love gave to me,

TWELVE males reclaiming their inner warrior through ritual drumming,

ELEVEN pipers piping (plus the 18-member pit orchestra made up of members in good standing of the Musicians Equity Union as called for in their union contract even though they will not be asked to play a note...),

TEN melanin-deprived testosterone-poisoned scions of the patriarchal ruling class system who are nevertheless comfortable in tights and leaping with love for one another,

NINE persons engaged in rhythmic self-expression,

EIGHT economically disadvantaged female persons stealing milk-products from enslaved bovine-Americans,

SEVEN endangered swans swimming on federally protected wetlands,

SIX enslaved fowl-Americans producing stolen non-human animal products,

and FIVE golden symbols of culturally sanctioned enforced domestic incarceration. (Note: after members of the Animal Liberation Front threatened to throw red paint at my computer, the calling birds, French hens and partridge have been reintroduced to their native habitat. To avoid further animal-American enslavement, the remaining gift package has been revised.)

FOUR hours of recorded whale songs,

THREE deconstructionist poets,

TWO Sierra Club calendars printed on recycled processed tree carcasses...

And a Spotted Owl activist chained to an old-growth pear tree.

The Twelve Days After Christmas

The Holiday Rage Version

The first day after Christmas, My true love and I had a fight.

And so I chopped the pear tree down - And burnt it, just for spite.

Then with a single cartridge, I shot that blasted partridge

My true love, my true love, my true love gave to me.

The second day after Christmas, I pulled on the old rubber gloves. And very gently wrung the necks of both the turtle doves

My true love, my true love, my true love gave to me.

On the third day after Christmas, My mother caught the croup.

I had to use the three French hens to make some chicken soup.

The four calling birds were a big mistake,

for their language was obscene.

The five golden rings were completely fake

and turned my fingers green.

The sixth day after Christmas, the six laying geese wouldn't lay.

So I sent the whole gaggle to the A.S.P.C.A.

My true love, my true love, my true love gave to me.

On the seventh day, what a mess I found.

The seven swans-a-swimming all had drowned.

The eighth day after Christmas, before they could suspect,

I bundled up the eight maids-a-milking, Nine ladies dancing, Ten lords-a-leaping, Eleven pipers piping, Twelve drummers drumming - And sent them back collect.

I wrote my true love "We are through, love!" And I said in so many words "Furthermore your Christmas gifts were for the Birds!"

Four calling birds, three French hens, two turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree!"


Not only has "The Twelve Days of Christmas" been the victim of much parody and joke, but it has an interesting and disputed history to go with it as well. It is widely believed by many Christians that this song was first written in England during the period from 1558 to 1829, after the kingdom outlawed Catholicism. The story is that this poem was written and put into song as a mnemonic (memory) tool to teach the most important tenets of the faith (especially to children) in code, so as not to get imprisoned and beheaded for it. Each aspect of the poem, then, is meant to be a symbol for something else that promotes Christ. The "true love" referred to is, in fact, Christ Himself.

Today, this story continues to be widely spread, but has also come under quite a bit of doubt. Whether or not this truly is the origins of this song, it can still be used by us today to continue to remember, re-affirm and celebrate our faith in Christ.

The twelve days themselves are a referral to and celebration of what became the traditional twelve day period starting on Christmas night and ending on January 5th or 6th (depending on the tradition), which is the day that tradition held the wise men arrived to present Jesus His gifts. This day is referred to as the Epiphany (appearance of God), because it is considered the first official recognition of the Christ-child to the world. Let us join in celebrating this together.

(From Todd Leupold's Sermon "The 12 Days of Christmas")

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