December 2002                                                                                                                        Newsletter No. 61

THE DAWN OF PEACE

"A Savior has been born to us!  Come, let us fix our gaze on the crib and adore Him!  ... Let us be renovated and redeemed by the mercy of the infant who delivers us from the powers of darkness unto the salvation of his great love.  O God and Infant, save us!  Shepherd us safely home!"   "They came with gifts--and adored, and so great was the dignity of the babe, so powerful was the light of these eyes that shone like celestial suns, that they could not help but cry out: 'Emmanuel: God is with us.'"  "To each and everyone He comes as if He had never come before in His own sweet way, He the Child who is born...   Jesus the Savior, He Emmanuel, He, Christ as Christ's Mass on Christmas--Merry Christmas!!" (Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen)

During these tumultuous and troubled times when the earth seems filled with the darkness of conflict and war, violence and unrest, natural disasters, scandal, uncertainty and division let us keep our eyes on the Light--Jesus Eucharistic, Savior, Prince of Peace!

Christmas Meditations

"When we worship you in the form of bread ... we always see you as an adult. But every year at Christmas, you reveal yourself to us as a child born in a crib. We stand in silent amazement ... In silent adoration we stand before the mystery, like Mary when the shepherd came and told her what they had seen and heard: 'She kept all these things, pondering them in her heart.'" (Chiara Lubich)

"Holy Mass is a daily Christmas.  The crib is the altar; the hands of our Lady, the hands of the priest.  Yes, in every Mass we can say, 'Puer natus est nobis,' a Child is born, a little Boy is born, the Son of God and of Our Lady, far more little than in the crib but still the same Christ.  At the altar as in Bethlehem is sung the same Gloria in excelsis, for the Savior is born, He is there on the altar; there is but one Jesus . . . Christmas, Incarnation, every day."  (Fr. Mateo Crawley-Boevey)

"At Christmas he was born a man; today he is reborn sacramentally. Then he was born from the Virgin; today he is born in mystery. When he was born a man, his mother Mary held him close to her heart; when he is born in mystery, God the Father embraces him with his voice when he says: This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased: listen to him. The mother caresses the tender baby on her lap; the Father serves his Son by his loving testimony. The mother holds the child for the Magi to adore; the Father reveals that his Son is to be worshiped by all the nations." (St. Maximus of Turin)

"The contemplation of Christ has an incomparable model in Mary. In a unique way the face of the Son belongs to Mary. It was in her womb that Christ was formed, receiving from her a human resemblance which points to an even greater spiritual closeness. No one has ever devoted himself to the contemplation of the face of Christ as faithfully as Mary.... When at last she gave birth to him in Bethlehem, her eyes were able to gaze tenderly on the face of her Son, as she wrapped him in swaddling cloths, and laid him in a manger (Lk2:7).  Thereafter Mary's gaze, ever filled with adoration and wonder, would never leave him" (Rosarium Virginis Mariae, Pope John Paul II).

St. Francis Xavier, Priest and Patron of Missionaries (Spain)--December 3
Jesuit St. Francis Xavier often spent whole hours during the day and into the night before Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, Who gave him the grace and the strength to lead so many souls to Christ.  His devotion to Our Eucharistic Lord was so great that Fr. Stefano Manelli, O.F.M. writes: "What shall we say of St. Francis Xavier who at times when distributing Holy Communion felt so carried away by a sense of adoration toward Our Lord Who was in his hands, that he got on his knees and in that position continued giving Holy Communion?  Did that not present a witness of faith and love worthy of heaven?"

St. John of the Cross, Priest and Reformer of Carmelites (Spain)--December 14
"The eternal spring is hidden in this living bread for our life's sake . . .  It is here calling out to creatures; and they satisfy their thirst."

Our Lady of Guadalupe, Woman Clothed With The SON-Jesus Hostia--December 12

Merry Christmas.  O Come let us adore Him in Eucharistic Adoration!--December 25

Holy Innocents--December 28
"Many years ago an angel came to bring the good news to Mary.  The Prince of Peace was anxious to come to earth and an angel was used to bring the good news that the Creator would become a little child." (Mother Teresa of Calcutta)   An angel appeared to St. Joseph, instructing him to flee with Mary and the Baby Jesus to Egypt, since Herod would order the killing of all baby males under two years of age.

Feast of the Holy Family--December 29
"Peace first came to the world when the Wise Men discovered a family.  And the dawn of peace will come again when other wise men return to homes where they see the human family of father, mother, and children, as the reverse order of the Holy Family: a Child, a Mother, and a Father." (Archbishop Sheen)

"As a prayer for peace, the Rosary is also, and always has been, a prayer of and for the family."  "When prayed well in a truly meditative way, the Rosary leads to an encounter with Christ in his mysteries and so cannot fail to draw attention to the face of Christ in others, especially in the most afflicted. How could one possibly contemplate the mystery of the Child of Bethlehem, in the joyful mysteries, without experiencing the desire to welcome, defend and promote life, and to shoulder the burdens of suffering children all over the world?" (Rosarium Virginis Mariae, Pope John Paul II).

"Jesus, Mary, and Joseph had only one life, one purpose: To glorify the Heavenly Father.  That is what we also must want.  To achieve it, we have to enter into union with Mary and Joseph, share their life--family life, the intimate interior life of which God alone is secret.  What happiness to be called to this life.  Our love will consist in living with Mary and Joseph on the love of Jesus Eucharistic." (St. Peter Julian Eymard)

We wish you a Blessed Christmas and Joyous New Year!

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