The legend of the sand dollar holds that when Christ ascended to heaven, he left the sand dollar as a symbol to help the evangelists teach the faith. Physical elements of the sand dollar represent events related to Christ’s life and death.

The sand dollar is flat-looking burrowing sea urchin belonging to the order Clypeasteroida. It lives on the floor of shallow sandy waters along the coasts of ocean waters in the Northern of Baja California

After the urchin is washed up on the beach and bleached by the sun, it looks like a large silver coin, such as the old Spanish or American dollar. Ergo, its simple American name. In other places it is known as the sea biscuit or pansy shell.

Finally, if you break open the sand dollar, five “doves” emerge – the doves of the Peace and Joy of Christmas. There are always five doves every time you open one.

 

Many poems have been written about the legend of the sand dollar. This one, author unknown, is my favorite:
The legend of the Sand dollar
That I would like to tell
Of the birth and death of Jesus Christ
Found in this lowly shell.

If you will examine closely,
You’ll see that you find here
Four nail holes and a fifth one
Made by a Roman’s spear.

On one side the Easter Lily,
It’s center is the star
That appeared unto the shepherds
And led them from afar.

The Christmas Poinsettia
Etched on the other side
Reminds us of His birthday,
Our joyous Christmas tide.

Now break the center open
And here you will release
The five white doves awaiting
To spread good will and peace.

This simple little symbol,
Christ left for you and me.
To help to spread His Message
Through all eternity

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