As we celebrate this Holy Christmas season may we relish the traditions of our family's and may we remember the excitement that Christmas Eve brought us as children and the joy of Christmas morning.
And more than these experiences, I invite you to take a moment, a quiet moment to just meditate on that first Christmas. With your eyes closed, try to block out all the distractions around you, and put yourself at the stall, kneeling before the crèche with the Holy Child Jesus. What do you hear? What do you smell and taste? What do feel? Give into the urge to be a shepherd, a passerby, the innkeeper, perhaps even the sheep and oxen. What must it have been like? Imagine being Joseph, Jesus' stepfather, and husband to the Mother of God-Mary. Put away all negative thoughts and semblances of the evil that exists in our world right now and give in to this dream of presence with Jesus.
Now, let us focus on why the baby Jesus ever entered our history and God's master plan. Turn your meditation from the crèche to the spirit of the living Christ in the world, working through creation and humanity to bring us to everlasting life.
Now, let us also remember those for whom this time is difficult because of personal situations, illness and death. Raise up in prayer those who need to be thought of and cared for especially when loneliness and doubts pervade their lives. Raise up those who must be away from home, family and friends due to the nature of their work and professions. Give thanks for our first responders and all health care workers, our military and those serving in the world's arena of trouble.
May our creator, our redeemer and the Holy Spirit the Trinity yet one God, be in our minds, our thoughts, on our lips, and inspire our hearts, not just in this Christmas Tide, but beyond and always.
May all be safe who are traveling, may all bring joy to those who are being visited, and may we all be blessed in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit!
Merry Christmas to All!
Fr. David +