Poinsettias are the red, star-shaped flowers often seen in churches and public places during the Advent season. These beautiful plants make a festive display but they also encompass Christian symbolism. This short video talks about the history and meaning behind these flowers of Christmas.
Poinsettias, often donated in honor or in memory of loved ones, adorn the altars of many United Methodist Churches.
They’re a Christmas symbol around the world.
In warm climates, poinsettias grow year round.
The plants are native to Central America.
Joel Roberts Poinsett, the first U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, brought plants to the U.S. in 1828.
The shape of the poinsettia flower and leaves resemble the Star of Bethlehem which led the Wise Men to Jesus.
The red colored leaves represent the blood of Christ shed for the world.
The white leaves represent His purity.
In Guatemala and Mexico, poinsettias are called La Flor de Nochebuena – Flower of the Holy Night.
Some churches use proceeds from the sale of Christmas poinsettias to fund a special project in the church or community.