Pastor's Corner

2020 12-24 Welcome the Christ Child as Jesus “Emmanuel”

Written by: Father Neil Herlihy

As we know, at Christmas, we welcome the Christ Child as Jesus “Emmanuel” comes to us.  In a recent Christmas message, Pope Francis reminded us that the light of peace, hope, and salvation is brought into the world with the birth of Jesus.  Our Holy Father prayed that in the midst of our busy lives, we would focus on the birth of Jesus and that Jesus would “soften our often stony and self-centered hearts and make them channels of his love.”  Pope Francis also expressed the hope that Jesus may “bring His tenderness to all and brighten the darkness of this world.”

The following Christmas prayer reflects the essence of the season and the sentiments of Our Holy Father:

Loving Father, help us remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and the worship of the wise men.

Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world.

Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.

Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

May the Christmas morning make us happy to be Your children, and the Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.  Amen!

As we reflect on this prayer, may we truly be people of hope, and allow the light of Christ to shine through the darkness of our lives.  May this Christmas season truly be a time of prayer and reflection, wonder and silence as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Light of the world.  I pray that we truly experience the joy and love of the Lord this Christmas as we hear His voice in the silence of our hearts.  May we also allow the sacred mysteries of Christmas to take on a special meaning in our lives.

As we know, we live in difficult and challenging times, as we strive to cope with the sustained impact of the COVID-19 virus.  Especially in this time of uncertainty, I am truly grateful for your enthusiastic support of our Parish and your active participation in our liturgical celebrations.  You have made it possible for us to sustain the spiritual integrity and vitality of our Parish.  I am also deeply grateful for your generosity which, in so many ways, has enhanced and strengthened the many programs, ministries, and activities that we offer at Saint Brigid.

On behalf of Fr. Bill, Fr. Michael, our Deacons and staff, I pray that God will continue to guide and protect you and your loved ones and that your Christmas will be blessed by holiness, happiness, and peace.   It is our privilege to serve you.

 

 

2021 01-03 Hope for New Year
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