Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Nativity of the Lord Year A B C

Readings: Is 9:2-7; Tt 2:11-14; Lk 2:1-14
More than two thousand years ago, while silence covered the little town of Bethlehem, something extraordinary happened. A little baby was born of the Virgin Mary. During the last 4 weeks of Advent, we have prepared ourselves with the Liturgy of the Word as well as with the ideas from Matthew Kelly’s book Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic. There is no better spiritual preparation for Christmas than focusing on the stewardship of daily prayer, learning more about our Catholic faith, generosity and sharing our faith with others. Now we know, the best way to live. Jesus is born tonight to show us the best way to live. Our homilies have helped us to see the incredible possibilities God offers us only when we open our hearts to be transformed into the best version of ourselves: the best way to live. What we celebrate tonight is the fulfilment of God’s plan for our salvation. At the beginning of Kelly’s book we find those prophetic words, “transforming people one at a time is at the heart of God’s plan for the world.” Transforming people one at a time is about salvation. On that first day of Christmas, Mary and Joseph went looking for a place for the Child Jesus to be born, but there was no room in the inn.

There is a story about Kevin, a little boy who was playing the role of the innkeeper in the Christmas Nativity play. Because he hated being the innkeeper, he asked his teacher if he could be one of the shepherds. Since he was bigger and looked tough, the teacher persuaded him to keep the role of the innkeeper. When the actual play started, all went well until Mary and Joseph arrived at the inn. Mary and Joseph asked for a room, and Kevin replied, “seek elsewhere, this inn is full.” When Mary and Joseph started walking away, the innkeeper stood watching them with tears in his eyes, and suddenly out of line with the play, he shouted to Joseph, “bring Mary back.” The teacher did not know where this line was leading to, but to the surprise of all, the innkeeper said, “you can have my room.” Dear friends in Christ, there are incredible possibilities for our transformation like Kevin in the story. Tonight, the birth of our Saviour announced by the angel that first Christmas ushers in a new era for Jesus is born to offer us the best way to live. He will lead us to be the best version of ourselves, but only if we let him have our room. If we let him have a place in our hearts, we become the best version of ourselves – the best way to live.

During our Advent homilies, we have offered you a a full course menu banquet: the appetizer, ante pasta, salad and the entrĂ©e. Tonight is the desert and it is going to be the best Italian gelato! Since we have created so much appetite for Matthew Kelly’s book, some have been wondering where they would buy the book. Tonight, in gratitude to your stewardship as a way of life, the parish is happy to offer each household a copy of the book as a Christmas gift. If you have already bought this book, please consider passing one copy you to another person. Send it to someone you love: a son or daughter or grandchild or friend especially people struggling with the faith. That is why Jesus came on that First Christmas. Make sure to get your household gift book as leave at all doors. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

©2014 John S. Mbinda

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