I wish you a blessed, grace-filled and loving feast of Christmas.
Again we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, who, as St. Paul reminds us, emptied Himself, even though He was God, and became one of us.
These words are simple to write and to say. But the profound meaning of them is a reality that would take us a lifetime to begin to understand and appreciate. Because of the sin of Adam, his disobedience to God, we were alienated from God and we stymied God’s plan for us.
Sin turned everything topsy-turvy. It intruded in what God had desired for us creatures. And so humankind for thousands of years lived under the burden and shadow of sin. Finally, at a moment in time, God’s promise of a Messiah, one who would save us and reconcile us to God, was realized.
The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity took on our human nature in the womb of the Virgin Mary and was born to begin a life like ours, which led to our reconciliation with the Father and our salvation through Jesus.
Scripture says a people who lived in darkness (all of us for the time after Adam sinned) have seen a great light. And of course that light is Jesus.
It is difficult to imagine that the Second Person of the Trinity would in fact empty Himself of all that went with being God, to live as a spirit, to live in eternal bliss. He became just like us, our brother, a helpless baby dependent on Mary and Joseph for His sustenance, for His care and shelter. The powerful reality we celebrate at Christmas is that God chose to become one of us so that in time, we could share Divine Life.
I would hope that you will find time in the busyness of the Christmas season to quietly reflect and pray about the wonders of God made man, to draw us back again into the Divine Plan, to overcome sin, darkness and death.
There is the prayer at Eucharist when a few drops of water are poured into the chalice:
By the mystery of this water and wine may we come to share in the Divinity of Christ who humbled Himself to share in our humanity.
My prayer for all of us is this: That we may come to share in the Divinity of Jesus who humbled Himself to share in our humanity.
Bishop Joseph Galante