"Tu Scendi Dalle Stelle. O Re del cielo..." "You go down from the stars, O King of Heaven..." This traditional Italian Christmas carol depicts the wondrous image of the infant Jesus descending from the heavens, to be born into poverty in the cold comfort of a stable. Did you know that, in 1223, St. Francis of Assisi, while at Grecchio, Italy, designed the first creche as a teaching aid, to educate the masses about the birth of Christ? We owe the popular Christmas creche tradition to the very practical needs of a saint.
In imitation of the first Franciscans, Sts. Francis, Clare and Anthony, we at St. Anthony Messenger Press are more committed to spreading the Gospel than ever. This year, St. Anthony Messenger magazine and our newsletters received 13 awards from the Catholic Press Association. Our books earned 14 awards. Our web site, AmericanCatholic.org has been largely re-designed, with easier navigation and news content that's updated daily. The site now serves 667,000 unique visitors monthly. Have you seen our profiles on Facebook and Twitter? Our mission is to engage those online communities in meaningful conversations about the Faith. You made Minute Meditations one of the most visited pages on our web site, so, in February, we launched it as an e-newsletter, inspiring over 7,000 subscribers each day.
As part of your year-end tax planning, would you consider remembering St. Anthony Messenger Press? Your tax-deductible donation in any amount helps us pay the costs of sending this e-newsletter.
Use our secure online donation form or you can mail a donation to Evangelization Fund, St. Anthony Messenger, 28 W. Liberty St., Cincinnati, OH 45202. If you prefer, you can phone in a credit-card donation to our Evangelization Fund at (513) 241-5615 or, in the U.S., at 800-488-0488.
We wish you all the blessings of the Christmas season and the coming New Year as we celebrate the Lord in our midst.
Peace and good,
Fr. Dan Kroger, O.F.M.
Publisher, St. Anthony Messenger Press and Franciscan Communications