From our Pastor: December 29, 2019

Merry Christmas! As we continue celebrating the birthday of Jesus Christ, the Only
Savior of the world, we also celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family this Sunday (the
Christmas Season lasts to the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, which in 2020 is January
12). Let’s pause for a few more moments during this Christmas Season to contemplate
the great Mystery of Jesus’ birth and the Holy Family (with help from Pope Emeritus
Benedict XVI; Homily, December 24, 2006, General Audience, January 3, 2007):

“God’s reign is the baby in need of help and in poverty. Exactly the same sign has
been given to us… God’s sign is simplicity… God’s sign is that He makes Himself
small for us. This is how He reigns. He does not come to us with power and outward
splendor. He comes as a baby – defenseless and in need of our help. He does not want
to overwhelm us with His strength. He takes away our fear of His greatness. He asks
for our love: so He makes Himself a child. He wants nothing from us other than our
love, through which we spontaneously learn to enter into His feelings, His thoughts,
and His will – we learn to live with Him and to practice with Him that humility of
renunciation that belongs to the very essence of love. God made Himself small so that
we could understand Him, welcome Him, and love Him… Christmas has become
the Feast of Gifts in imitation of God Who has given Himself to us. Let us allow our
heart, our soul, and our mind to be touched by this fact!”

“It is only the Child lying in the manger who possesses the true secret of life. For this
reason, He asks us to welcome Him, to make room for Him within us, in our hearts, in
our homes, in our cities, and in our societies. The words of Saint John’s Gospel Prologue
echo in our minds and hearts: ‘To all who received Him… He gave power to become
children of God’ ( John 1:12). Let us endeavor to be among those who welcome Him.
Before Him one cannot remain indifferent. We too, dear friends, must continuously
take sides. What will our response be? With what attitude will we welcome Him? The
simplicity of the shepherds and the seeking of the Magi who scrutinized the signs of
God by means of the star come to our help. The humility and docility of Mary and
the wise prudence of Joseph serve as an example to us… The love that Jesus, born in
Bethlehem, brought into the world binds to Himself in a lasting relationship of friendship
and brotherhood all who welcome Him. Saint John of the Cross said: ‘In giving us all,
that is, His Son, in Him God has now said all. Fix your eyes on Him alone… and you
will find in addition more than you ask and desire.’”

With prayers for a joyful and blessed Christmas Season and New Year, in Christ,

Fr. William

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