“I will come!” This is the Lord’s hidden response to “all who wait for him; to those who have called him in in the last week of Advent; and to those who longed for him during the course of the Christian life. It is the echo of his ultimate promise at the end of the Apocalypse - ‘Surely I am coming soon’ (Rev 22:20).” (Treanor, Seven Bells to Bethlehem).
“Soon a Child will be born for them. Soon a people will be born again too. ‘In the morning you will see his glory.’ This is from the book of Exodus, it’s a reference to the mann (bread) from heaven promised by the Lord to the community of Israel in the desert. The Manna was the heavenly food with which God fed his wandering tribes during their bitter pilgrimage in the wilderness.” (Treanor)
“This day God gives the flesh and blood of his Son to be the new manna. It comes from Bethlehem - House of Bread...” (Treanor)
“Christmas is especially the time of the Eucharist, the time of gentle Mary, the time of Emmanuel-God with Us. It is the time of peace with God and each other, the time of grace. It is the dawn of a new day that herald’s the eternal Day which will never set.
Until that final fulfillment, this feast is above all a time when heaven breaks through to earth, and God’s kingdom - for however short a space- seems to hold sway over the forces of evil that hold the human heart in thrall for so much of the rest of the year.” (Treanor)
“I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)
While secular society will soon end its celebration of the “holiday season,” we in the Church, people of faith, have only just begun our true Season of Christmas.
“Something new has happened: he has appeared. He has revealed himself. He has emerged from the inaccessible light in which he dwells. He himself has come into our midst. This was the great joy of Christmas for the early Church: God has appeared.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
Keep Christ, born in Bethlehem, as the center of your celebration. When you open presents, be grateful to the givers of those gifts, but also remember that the greatest gift is God coming to us in Jesus Christ. As you look at the warm hearth, lights and Christmas tree, see in those things the warmth of God’s love, the light He brings to a darkened world, and the life poured out on the Tree of Life, the Cross.
Merry Christmas to all,
Father Robert Letona