Dear friends! The Catalog of Good Deeds team starts a new series of personal stories devoted to the Feast of the Nativity. Our brothers and sisters are going to share with you some of their brightest Christmas memories from their childhood and explain how that influenced their own perception of this Great Feast.
You can also tell us about your own memories. Join us on Facebook to learn more.
My childhood was filled with Christmas. My mom was an animation artist and director who made a series of Christmastide stories, i.e., Christmas-themed cartoons for each day of the Christmastide. Each cartoon was ten minutes long, and it took nine months of work of an entire team of artists and six months of preparations. It looked like magic: the puppets that I had held in my own hands—the flat puppets cut out of colored film—suddenly came alive and started moving around. The magic was in the puppeteers’ hands: the director deliberately avoided using computer graphics to make homogeneous filling and to calculate movements of the characters. She preferred meticulous manual work where each detail mattered. All she needed was several layers of glass, puppets, and thin tweezers. A careful shift—two frames—another movement—two more frames. 24 frames per second—a week of work to produce several seconds of the cartoon. People are waiting for Christmas miracles but apparently, you can make miracles with your own hands, frame by frame.
I remember the unusual feeling of a hot summer outdoors and Christmas inside the room at the same time. It was always Christmas in the studio.
I would explore different aspects of Christmas every year. I was impressed by the Lord’s humble birth in the cave, described in the poem Christmas by Sasha Cherny. I was left thinking about mercy, tenderness, and the genuinely Christian understanding of eternal life shown in The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen. I was excited by voluntary self-sacrifice of Lady Godiva from Coventry, and then watched a typical story that happened in our times on Christmas Eve… Gradually, I came to realize how great and all-embracing Christmas is. We simply have to stop and think… until we are finally able to see Jesus behind the Christmas Tree, the gifts, and the first star of the Christmas Eve.
By Sister Maria (Mironenko),
a content manager, a member of The Catalog of Good Deeds team
More stories will come! Join our group on Facebook to share your childhood memories about Christmas with others and get a chance to receive one of our handmade gifts.