Advent 2010

December 25 – Christmas Day

A Christmas wish 

 The New Zealand and Australian Redemptorists,
our partners in mission and all our colleagues,
wish you a very happy Christmas.

May the peace of Christ,
that first came into the world through a tiny child,
now, through his life, death and glorious resurrection,
burst up afresh in your hearts and homes.
 

 

Thought for today:

Mother and childIt was hot and muggy. They had just finished Christmas dinner and the children were getting tired and cranky because they weren’t allowed to hop in the pool for another hour. The adults were in the lounge sipping liqueurs and coffee and chit-chatting about various things – the tennis, the Melbourne Test, the climbing dollar, and whether Tuesday was a public holiday.  When those conversations fell on increasingly sleepy horizons, Gwen asked, “What did you think of Fr. Brian’s homily last night?”

The local pastor had preached on relationships at Midnight Mass. He’d said

  • Christmas is all about relationships.
  • Christmas is God’s way of relating with the world, his way of moving in among people.
  • God who is full of relationship himself – Father, Son and Spirit – wants to reach out to all.
  • God really wants to have humans as his friends, as his partners, as his beloved ones.
  • God is quite mindful of the poor and the oppressed; he relates with them in special ways.
  • Not only that, every genuine human relationship is shot-through with God.
  • Relating well makes people more beautifully human, more God-like.

As he finished his homily Fr. Brian suggested that instead of making New Year resolutions it might be interesting if people tried to extend Christmas by relating better through 2011

Troy reckoned it was a damn good sermon, especially with the big crowd present. All of them agreed it was an inspired message for Christmas.  While they didn’t say as much, each of them hoped to relate better through the coming year – with one another, and with the lonely and struggling.

Scripture  

God’s love for us was revealed when God sent into the world his only Son so that we could have life through him.
- 1 John 4:9

Prayer

Almighty God and Father of light, a child is born for us and a son given us. Your eternal Word leaped down from heaven in the silent watches of the night, and now your Church is filled with wonder at the nearness of her God. Open our hearts to receive his life and increase our vision on this new day, that our lives may be filled with his glory and his peace, who lives and reigns forever and ever.  Amen.

Poetry extract 

I’d call a place
pure paradise
where families are loyal
and strangers are nice,
where the music is jazz
and the season is fall.
Promise me that
or nothing at all.
- From ‘Preacher, don’t send me’ by Maya Angleou

Postlude


"Hark the Herald Angels Sing" by the choir and congregation of St. Paul's Cathedral, London

A happy 2011 to everyone