My Dear Friends,
“…the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1:5)
A few weeks ago, I received a Christmas card from a brother priest in a neighboring parish that had a beautiful silhouette of the newborn Jesus along with Mary and Joseph in the manger and the bible verse above inscribed by the star. For some reason, this verse resonated with me and has stayed with me for the better part of a week.
Yes, we have come to the end of a very challenging year, BUT the light of Christ still shines amidst the darkness of this world, and the darkness has not overcome this light. This is the cause of our joy as we get ready to celebrate a most unusual Christmas. It is unusual only in that we cannot celebrate with all the people that we are used to sharing Christmas with, but we will celebrate because no matter what may be happening in the world, we will join the angels in song on Christmas Eve when we celebrate the birth of our Messiah. God himself comes to intervene in our history in order to definitively set things right.
We must learn to trust the Lord. We must learn to trust in his divine will for us. Last Christmas, none of us could possibly imagine what this year would bring, but we have to see the hand of God at work in our lives especially in times of trial. Mary and Joseph had to trust God completely when they had to make the long trek to Bethlehem and then again when they had to flee into Egypt. We ask Mary and Joseph to help us trust God as they trusted him.
May we be a people of faith and joy that rejoices in the light and hope that Christmas brings. This light truly does shine in a world full of darkness, and this light must penetrate our hearts. We are called to be the light of Jesus to the world, so that one person at a time, one soul at a time, we can start bringing that light to a world that so desperately needs it. On behalf of the priests and Carmelite Sisters of the Church of the Little Flower and St. Theresa Catholic School, I pray that you and your family have a Blessed Christmas and a grace filled New Year. You will all be remembered in our Christmas Masses.