There’s something mystical and beautiful about a Moravian Star. It has a wonderful symmetry – and in fact, was supposedly first created as part of a geometry lesson in a Moravian (a Protestant denomination) school in Germany.
It has been widely adopted now as a symbol of the Christmas Star, Advent, and the Epiphany.
The Moravian Church originated in central Europe (Czech/German), and sent missionaries around the world, including to North America’s native populations. Those people included tribes of the Hudson Valley and Northeastern Pennsylvania. The Moravians actually founded the city of Bethlehem, PA, home of Moravian College.
Growing up in Eastern Pennsylvania, we were surrounded by Moravian stars in stores and homes all around us. I remember the year my mother bought a kit and she and I assembled a heavy paper star about two feet in diameter, designed to have a light inside it. It was beautiful and adorned some section of our living room every year after that, from Advent through Epiphany, when it came down with our other Christmas decorations prior to our parents’ annual “Twefth Night” party.
This year, my beloved and I went into New York City twice during the holiday season. On both trips, we and our companions wandered through the Columbus Circle Holiday Market on the southwest corner of Central Park. Imagine my delight when we emerged onto Columbus Circle and looked up at the Time Warner building. Hung from the celing of its main lobby was a collection of huge Moravian stars illuminating the building, gradually changing colors. I was able to get a better look at them when we went into the building in search of lunch. They took me back, and I thoroughly enjoyed them.
Epiphany was this week, and I suspect that many of the Moravian stars put up for Christmas this year have been taken down now. I’m thinking I’ll go online and order a kit or two to make some to decorate my house next Christmas – maybe my grandkids can help me put them together, and we can add these beautiful illuminating stars to our family traditions. They’re certainly less fattening than cookies!
This post was written in response to the WordPress Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Illumination. To see other bloggers’ bright responses, click here.