Our Jesse Tree

A Jesse Tree is an ancient Christmas tradition that we as a family have only just started this year. I have wanted to include a Jesse tree in our Christmas celebrations for the last few years, but have never had it sorted in time for Christmas, so this year I just decided to just do it, even though I didn't have it all quite perfect.

It's been great this year as the kids are getting to an age where they can really appreciate things, and join in the discussions and activities.

What is a Jesse Tree?
A Jesse Tree is a unique Advent tree that can be very useful and fun for teaching children about the Bible at Christmas time.

The Jesse Tree represents the family tree, or genealogy of Jesus Christ. It tells the story of God's salvation plan from creation and throughout the Old Testament, to the coming of the Messiah. The name comes from Isaiah 11:1, "Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, and a branch from his roots will bear fruit."

To make a Jesse Tree, you just need a dry branch (we found one in the bush behind the school), a bucket with some sand in it, and some symbols to hang on the tree.

We went to this page, and just printed out these small ornaments (pdf file) onto some card, punched a hole in each one and we tie them onto the tree each day with a piece of green ribbon after we have done the reading.

There are also readings that go with each symbol available on the same page. Just click on this link to download Advent reflections for Jesse Tree (pdf file).

If you want to see heaps of different ways of doing a Jesse Tree, just google "Jesse Tree". You will find heaps of images of different trees people have done. Some are felt, some people handcraft each decoration, some people use a green christmas tree... the possibilities are endless.

Our problem this year, has been that we actually found a really good Jesse Tree book from Koorong after we had begun using the printed out symbols from the internet, and the stories and readings in the book do not all correspond with the symbols we are using from the internet. However, we are improvising, and we will have it all sorted out for next year!

Here is the beginnings of our Jesse Tree... we might try to make ornaments next year to match up with our new Jesse Tree book, which has excellent readings, but no symbols (only symbol suggestions).


  1. Ruth, thanks ever so much for sharing about the 'Jesse Tree', this is the first time I have ever heard about it.
    Janelle :)

  2. Hi, thanks for sharing the Jesse tree. It would be a lovely way to celebrate advent. Could you tell me the name of the book you purchased from Koorong? Marie/x

  3. I came across your blog from Google as I was searching for the Jesse Tree readings. We have the ornaments and the bible verses but I love the link to the PDF of reflections! Thank you so much for sharing!!!


Hi! Thanks for leaving me a comment... I love to hear from people :-)
Ruth xx