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Chief Superintendent's Message - Christmas 2020


Dear brother, dear sister, if your hands seem empty, if you think your heart is poor in love, this night is for you.

The grace of God has appeared, to shine forth in your life. Accept it and the light of Christmas will shine forth in you.

(Pope Francis, Homily for the Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord, 12/24/19)

 

There is an interesting paradox that occurs at this time of year. The calendar year is coming to a close, and we are all weary, especially from the challenges of 2020. However, the liturgical year has just begun, and it brings freshness, renewal, and excitement with the birth of the Baby Jesus. In his homily from Midnight Mass last year, Pope Francis shared a story that speaks to our hearts:

 

A charming legend relates that at the birth of Jesus the shepherds hurried to the stable with different gifts. Each brought what he had; some brought the fruits of their labour, others some precious item. But as they were all presenting their gifts, there was one shepherd who had nothing to give. He was extremely poor; he had no gift to present. As the others were competing to offer their gifts, he stood apart, embarrassed. At a certain point, Saint Joseph and Our Lady found it hard to receive all those gifts, especially Mary, who had to hold the baby. Seeing that shepherd with empty hands, she asked him to draw near. And she put the baby Jesus in his arms. That shepherd, in accepting him, became aware of having received what he did not deserve, of holding in his arms the greatest gift of all time. He looked at his hands, those hands that seemed to him always empty; they had become the cradle of God. He felt himself loved and, overcoming his embarrassment, began to show Jesus to the others, for he could not keep for himself the gift of gifts.

 

May you have a blessed Christmas, full of the grace of God shining forth in your lives!


Chief Superintendent
Robert Martin

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