Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns

Representing Maryknoll Fathers & Brothers, Maryknoll Sisters, and Maryknoll Lay Missioners
  • Sri Lanka children - Jim Stipe
  • Golden calf on Wall Street
  • Seedbag
  • Altar in Palestine - R Rodrick Beiler
  • corn bags

Christmas Day

Dec 25, 2016
Isaiah 52:7-10; Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6; Hebrews 1:1-6; John 1:1-18
Prepared by:
Tom Tiscornia, MM

The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us

As we celebrate the great feast of the incarnation we become more and more aware of God’s tremendous love for us.  The birth of Jesus confirms how present God is with us and in our midst. How precious is the gift of life that even the Son of God passed through the very same birth process as each one of us.  This is a tremendous experience that we share with Jesus.

John tells us that in Jesus was life and light shining in the darkness enlightening everyone.  This life and light brought by Jesus continues to guide his followers in so many ways.  We must recognize and realize its presence and strength.

How?  Look at the world today, where can this life and light of Jesus be rekindled and enriched?  Isaiah prophesizes “how beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good tidings, announcing peace.” (52:7) Isn’t this too our inheritance as Christians?

Paul in the Letter to the Hebrews reminds us that Jesus “reflects the glory of God and bears the very stamp of his nature.” (1:3) God’s glory is being tarnished in our present age by war and violence, disrespect for the environment and humanity.  The more we move out from our ‘comfort zone’ the greater our awareness becomes that the “ true light that enlightens every man “ has yet to be fully realized.

The birth of Jesus, the same as ours, connects us with all of humanity.  Imagine how similar you are with a person born in Africa, Asia, Honduras, Syria and others from your own city or town.  Your needs and rights are the very same as theirs – water, freedom, security, respect.  What can we learn from the cultural richness of these others?  Alot.

The earth belongs to us all.  When we discard food do we think of the hungry?  How about Christmas dinner?  When we pollute the environment, are we aware of its effect on others who are our neighbors?

Pope Francis tells us in Laudato Si'  “how wonderful is the certainty that each human life is not adrift in the midst of hopeless chaos.” (65)  Jesus the ‘Word’ is truly in our midst as one of us.  He gives to us the Truth, the Way and the Life we desire in order to live out our lives in peace and harmony with all of our sisters and brothers.  When we interrelate with others who are outside of our own milieu we become even more human and indeed richer.

What a great gift as we celebrate this Christmas season – the gift of the Word dwelling amongst us and the gift of true relationship with all of humanity.

Photo: Children among South Sudan refugees in June 2012. Photo credit: Flickr user EU/ECHO/Malini Morzaria, Creaetive Commons.