Spoiling Jesus…A Grandmother’s Tale

Painting: (Courtesy of LeonardodaVinci.net)

Dear Reader:

Doesn’t the thought of Jesus having a grandmother to spoil Him warm your heart? Don’t all children deserve such grandmothers? And particularly since Jesus shared a birthday and a holiday together…we hope His family gave him lots and lots of presents.


Quinn Caldwell suggests this possibility (according to other ancient sources) and famous painters like Leonardo da Vinci…all wanting a grandmother for Jesus too.




In this Advent Reading…Caldwell examines the possibility of such a grandmother playing a major role in Jesus’ upbringing. In this Christmas reading he explains:

“They say Mary’s parents were named Joachim and Anne. This isn’t anywhere in the Bible, but other ancient sources say so. Legend has it that they were deeply devoted to each other but were unhappy at their childlessness.

Then one day, an angel appeared to each of them separately and told them- guess what?- that they were going to have a baby. A popular theme for medieval paintings was their “huggy” meeting at the gates of Jerusalem, where they had each come running from opposite directions to tell the other what happened. 

*Another popular painting shows a wee Jesus sitting on Mary’s lap, who in turn is sitting on Anne’s lap. (See title painting)

I love St. Anne. No so much because I know anything about her, but because I love the idea of Jesus having a grandma. I bet she was always buying him too many presents. She probably let him stay up late when he spent the weekend at her house. I bet she never told him she couldn’t play with him right now because she was busy. I can totally see her rolling her eyes at Mary and Joseph’s uptight parenting.

“Mom, stop it! You’ll spoil him!” Mary would say.

“That’s the Grand-Messiah’s job” Anne would respond serenely as she sailed by with more cookies for the Savior.

“What am I going to do?” Mary would ask as they had coffee and watched him play. And Anne would put her arms around that big girl who would never stop being her baby, pull her close, and hold her tight. “You’re going to do what we all do; love him as hard as you can for as long as you can. No matter what!” 

Yesterday it dawned on me that we were a week away from Christmas Eve…Grandmother’s Boo’s annual special time with the grandchildren…games, snowball fights, and stocking surprises…all before the 5:00 church service and annual Christmas Eve story.

Generational family is important to children…learning about their family tree…especially the birth of Jesus and His family tree…producing God’s children who inhabit every nook and cranny on Earth.

So until tomorrow…God thank you for grandparents who never stop being parents. Amen.

Ann Graves finishes up her radiation treatments today…Congratulations Ann on an early Christmas present you have been given. Ann had some skin issue side effects and had to stop her radiation for several weeks…but today she is sliding into home!

Ann gave me a Christmas card that I opened in the waiting room while her procedure was on-going yesterday when I drove her to her appointment…and inside was a Christmas tree ornament that immediately reminded me of the Chapel of Hope…a sign and reminder that this summer will mark the the tenth benchmark year since entering the chapel in 2010 …lead by Honey! Definitely my guardian angel who lead me to HOPE.

*(Thank you Ann for the chapel ornament…I love it!)

*And speaking of Honey I should have known she would appear yesterday. As soon as I woke up my photo album reminded me that two years ago on this day…a photo showing Honey fixing the apple tree centerpiece appeared. Sure enough about 11 she called and we worked out a time later in the afternoon for her to come over.


We caught up some and are planning a little Christmas celebration and friendship gift exchange Friday…along with “knighting” the apple tree when she returns with all the fixings. An annual tradition…not to be missed!



Late yesterday afternoon…the Turner family bundled up with rain gear and umbrellas to join in all the fun in the neighborhood for a special horse-drawn carriage ride to see all the lights in the area…thanks to an amazing resident and neighbor, Lori Hollister, who entered a contest and won! Way to go Lori! Mandy said the adventure was “wet and wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!” 🙂

Lastly… a BIG SHOUT-OUT and HAPPY BIRTHDAY  to my beloved Summerville who just turned 172 years old yesterday December 17, 1847.  Thank you Summerville for making me feel like a young chick again in comparison!

From that tiny village of a few dozen homes in 1847, some 13 years later we had five hotels and boarding houses, three churches, two public buildings, nine stores, 372 dwellings and 1,088 inhabitants.

And look at us now. (Barbara Hill)


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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1 Response to Spoiling Jesus…A Grandmother’s Tale

  1. bcparkison says:

    Do I have to admit that I have never even thought about the grandparents to Jesus. Of course there were some but the attention has always been on just Mary his mother.


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