BEFORE THE CROSS | Story of Jesus’ birth foretold throughout the Old Testament

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson honored Pat and Leonard Dino with the Order of Saint Louis King award Dec. 7. The Dinos are members of St. Anselm Parish and were honored for leadership and stewardship through generous gifts of time, talent and treasure.

"This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about." These are the first words of the Gospel on Dec. 18. And all week long, the readings tell the back story of Christmas. What they tell us is that the story is far deeper and richer than just the preceding nine months.

For example, at the start of the week, we hear about a prophecy from Jeremiah: God will raise up an heir of David, and he will be the savior of Israel. This was written about 600 years before Christ!

Hundreds of Nativity scenes — under one roof


It started with a small Nativity scene, with little hand-painted figurines. Years ago, Carol Ehlert was working in a craft store at Village Square shopping center in Hazelwood and saw it come into the store. She knew she had to buy it.

Then came the Precious Moments Nativity set, which she joked she never told her husband how much it cost.

Eventually, collecting Nativity scenes became a nearly 50-year hobby for Ehlert, a member of St. Joseph Parish in Cottleville. Ask her how many she has, and she'll tell you she's simply lost track.

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