First of all, Merry Christmas! I write these words with an ever deeper sense of how much we all need the Savior whose birth we celebrate at Christmas. Our world so desperately needs the peace that only Christ can bring us. It’s this peace that I want to wish you this Christmas Season! And I know I speak for all our parish staff when I say this.
We gather to sing the praises of the Lord and to be a sign of the great love and forgiveness of God which is made manifest in the Baby of Bethlehem. Once, long ago, God made a powerful statement about the depth of the love that we celebrate at Christmas. The babe born of human estate is none other than the Word of God made Flesh. This is a great mystery that we can never hope to understand, but we do believe it and today we gather to proclaim it in whatever fragmentary ways we grasp it.
God became one of us in the person of Jesus the Christ and was born of the Virgin Mary. We know the story of Mary and her husband Joseph. We can (and should) recount it by heart. But this great story contains the profound truth of God’s love for sinful, broken and imperfect humanity (that’s us!).
The implications of this story go way beyond our vision of the present. In fact, the Christmas story has cosmic implications of which we are a small yet significant part. Every week we profess the Creed which reminds us that the “Word became flesh and dwelt among us”. But this is not just an historic statement. It is a commentary on the Word of God continuing to dwell among us.
What God sees in Jesus Christ includes us. Because we have been made one with Christ in Baptism, when God looks upon Jesus, God sees each and all of us. Aren’t we blessed to have such a powerful and gentle model of what it means to be human! Just as Christ was called to heal the sick and bring hope to the down trodden, so are we. We share in the “work of Christ” in this world because as St Paul says: “We are the body of Christ.” We have all the hope, joy and forgiveness of God within us. All we need to do is believe it and share it. The Word of God is enfleshed in us! We just need to let it flow.
Please do have a Blessed and Merry Christmas and please continue to pray for peace in our world!
In peace and courage,