Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Preparing for Advent: Jesse Tree

A few years ago I introduced the Jesse Tree to my older girls as a new Advent tradition.  Each night from the first Sunday in Advent up until Christmas Eve we gather in the dining room.  We light our Advent wreath and since a verse from O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.  That is followed by us praying a decade of the rosary using the joyful mysteries and then we round it out with our Jesse Tree.

The first year we did the Jesse Tree I was all over the the place with it.  I had found some free printable ornaments which I liked, but I didn't like that there were only twenty four ornaments.  That same year, Holy Heroes released their Jesse Tree DVD.  Midway through Advent I abandoned the Jesse Tree ornaments we started with and switched over to the Holy Heroes one because I liked the ornaments better, there were enough for every day of Advent, they included the O Antiphons and best of all, they had videos for each ornament where my girls could listen to the story and see either a felt story board display of the story or something similar such as the Holy Heroes Adventure guides acting out a scene from the bible.

Last year I wasn't sure if we were going to watch the videos.  Instead, I was going to have Madeline read the corresponding stories from the picture biblewe use for our Jesus Tree during Lent, but the girls insisted.  The Holy Heroes Jesse Tree has become family tradition.

In all honesty I was going to wait another week or two to write about the Jesse Tree, but Holy Heroes sent out an email today saying that their Jesse Tree DVD is their Deal of the Day.  So you might want to head over there and check out their sale price if you're interested in this Jesse Tree.

The DVD includes the file for the printable ornaments.  I tinker with the size a bit and make ours about half the size they have on the PDF document.  I then take our shiny green foil wrap and cut out a tree for each of the girls.  They hang their trees on their bedroom doors and tape a new ornament on it each night.  They really enjoy coloring in their ornaments by candle light each night during Advent.  I hope when they are grown that they have fond memories of celebrating Advent.

In Advent, Christmas Epiphany in the Domestic Churchthey also have a nice Jesse Tree.  With this one you can print out and color the symbols for each of the readings and read the corresponding story from the bible, or if you have the time, you could match up the stories with those in a children's bible.  They have some great ideas for different ways of setting up a Jesse Tree.  In addition to the Jesse Tree, Advent, Christmas and Epiphany in the Domestic Church has a lot of other great ideas for celebrating these seasons with your children.

If you want to do a Jesse Tree but aren't sure you can commit to doing a story/ornament each day, you might like the St. Joseph Picture Book Celebrating Advent with the Jesse Tree.This book has eleven Jesse Tree readings each with a corresponding full color illustration.  The readings are divided among the four weeks of Advent with the first three weeks having three readings and the fourth week having two. 


  1. Hello Karen!

    I am having an Autumn giveaway on my blog if you would like to enter. I will be posting a prize day till November 2. :)


  2. I sell a DIY Jesse Tree Kit if you are interested in creating a treasured heirloom with your girls. :)

    I also sell just the pattern if you already have all the materials:

    Great blog!:) Blessings to you! ~Lisa

  3. Jesse Trees are a fantastic way to celebrate Advent and a wonderful tradition for families. I make Jesse Tree ornaments.


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