My brothers and sisters in Christ: At Christmas, Christ comes into the world and our lives as a sign of the love God has for us. The Christmas Season should be a time of prayer and reflection, wonder, and silence as we celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Light of the world.
In a Christmas message as reported by “Vatican News”, Pope Francis spoke about this need to focus on silence. He stated, “Christmas is preferring the silent voice of God to the noisiness of consumerism. If we can be silent in front of the crib, Christmas will be a surprise even for us, not something seen before.” He reminded the faithful that we will celebrate Christmas well, “if, like Joseph, we will give space to silence, if, like Mary, we say ‘here I am’ to God, if, like Jesus, we will be close to those who are alone, if, like the shepherds, we will leave our enclosures to be with Jesus.”
As we reflect on these profound insights of Our Holy Father, we are invited to take to heart these words taken from Psalm 46: “…Be still and know that I am God, exalted among all nations, exalted in the earth.” At this special time of the year, may we truly be still and hear His voice in the silence of our hearts, and allow the light of His Son to shine through the darkness of our world and the darkness of our lives. My prayer for all of us is that in the midst of the darkness of this increasingly secular world, we will have the wisdom to embrace the spiritual peace that Jesus offers us. As a community of faith, may we truly experience the joy and love of the Lord this Christmas as we continue to strive for peace in our world, peace in our homes, and peace in our hearts.
As disciples, we have much for which to be thankful. As a parish community, we join in thanking God for the many blessings He has bestowed upon us, our families, and our nation. We especially thank Him for the gift of His Son.
As we celebrate the birthday of Christ, I want to thank you for all you do to enhance the spiritual vitality of our parish, especially in these difficult and uncertain times. I am deeply grateful for your willingness to embrace a spirit of generosity which, in so many ways, has enriched and strengthened our many programs, ministries, and activities, and has greatly fostered vocations to the priesthood, diaconate, and religious life.
On behalf of Fr. Darragh, Fr. Bill, our Deacons, and staff, I wish you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas and a happy, healthy, and holy New Year. May you experience the wonder of the Lord’s peace and joy in many profound and mysterious ways.
It is a privilege to serve you and our faith community.