Archive for December, 2007

Christmas Eve (2007)

December 31, 2007

A friend of mine told me that her grandson had come home from school with three pictures he had colored, meant to symbolize the three major faiths at holiday time: a Menorah for the Jews, a lamp for the Muslims, and for the Christians… a candy cane!  Two symbols that evoke  profound aspects of their faith for the Jews and Muslims.  For us Christians, a piece of candy!  Let me tell you a story, and then suggest a proper symbol for our faith at Christmas time. (more…)

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John 1:1-18 (2007)

December 30, 2007

Today’s Gospel: http://bible.oremus.org/?passage=John+1

The world became less stable during this past week with the assassination of Benazir Bhutto; and as the world becomes more violent, our civil liberties become less secure.  This unholy combination of violence and repression threatens to form a political vortex that could suck our democratic way of life away.  That was on my mind as I read today’s Gospel.  The opening phrase struck me: “In the beginning was the word.”  What did that really mean?  I wanted to get a felt sense of that opening phrase, and as it came to me I found that it offered hope in the face of today’s mounting violence. (more…)

Matthew 3:1-12 (2007)

December 24, 2007

Today’s Gospel: http://bible.oremus.org/?passage=Matthew+3

Does warm and fuzzy describe our feelings after hearing this Gospel reading? More like cold and prickly. This morning I want to put the reading in its Advent context, then go through the reading for understanding, and finally, show how it is, in fact, good news. (more…)

Matthew 1:18-25 (2007)

December 23, 2007

Today’s Gospel: http://bible.oremus.org/?passage=Matthew+1

Anthony de Mello, SJ, tells this story in The Song of the Bird. A pilgrim was on a journey and he stopped as night was falling at the edge of a village. He laid out his blanket under a tree and prepared to settle down for the night. All at once a villager ran up to him and demanded that the pilgrim give him the precious stone. Puzzled, the pilgrim asked what stone he meant. The villager went on in great excitement to tell the pilgrim that an angel had appeared to him in a dream the night before. The angel told him that if he went to the edge of the village at night fall, he would find a pilgrim who would give him a precious stone that would make him rich for the rest of his life. (more…)