24 December 2012

25th of December, the Eleventh day of the Lunar month

Tonight is one of those nights when we gather together as a family, a time when all is forgiven (or at least set aside for the night) when we gather and share with each other.  There is family and food, decorations and presents, and for some, there is Church.  Whether we believe or not, whether we believe the same or not, tonight, we are invited to transcend the differences that sets each of us apart, and to extend a hand to each other, to embrace or welcome my sister, or brother, or uncle or aunt.  We come and in our own way, we bring the best of who we are as we see new faces or become reacquainted with old ones.  We celebrate in the chill of the evening as the different groups come together, this group in the living room, the kids somewhere else, the old folks in the dining room and everyone chatting and having a good time.  Tonight, however, as we come together, we celebrate a reality that is far beyond our understanding.  God becomes man.  Love takes on Flesh.  Christ is BORN!  We celebrate that glorious event of God's reaching out to each and everyone of us in great love, a love that takes on flesh and becomes one of us in all things but sin.  We come together and allow the twinkling of the lights and the warmth of the home, to embrace us in a way that God himself does for each and every one of us.  We come together and in the hug or kiss, the handshake or fist-pump, we feel the warmth of God made man.  In sitting across from each other at dinner or bringing a gift to another, in a gentle smile of a friend and even a foe, we are reminded of the joyous occasion that is God coming to each of us.  Not a mighty warrior or triumphant king, but a gentle baby.  A baby that needs us to care for him even as he grows so as to care for us, a baby that becomes the bread of life, a bread that is to be broken.  We come together and remember that in Jesus the Christ, we are redeemed and that just as a baby is vulnerable and open to our care, so too the redemption that Christ offers.  It is not imposed upon us or forced, but rather in great love, it is offered to us in an invitation over and over again, always with love beyond all telling.  And so as we come together and commemorate the birth of Him who would eventually be broken for us, we are reminded that we have no need to remain broken, because in Him we are made whole, and for that, we proclaim with all of creation, Glory to God in the Highest!  Peace to you and God bless you.  And as always, know that I love you.  Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad.  Fr. Ricky

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