Dear parishioners of Sacred Heart,
This is the time of the year when we pause to contemplate the boundless merciful love of God as manifested so powerfully in the mystery of the Incarnation. God in His infinite wisdom embraces our humanity so that we can share in His divinity.
In a sense, we are like the shepherds at the Bethlehem cave, eager to see, to gaze on and to adore the mystery of love which the Infant Jesus really is. The words of the Angel to the shepherds are both news of “great joy” and “the sign” by which we will find and recognize Him. “You will find an infant, wrapped in swaddling clothes, and lying in a manger.” This is God! These are the ways of God! This is His Glory! This is our joy!
The joy that we celebrate on this feast of Christmas is something deep and new. It is not a joy of souvenirs of childhood memories, of Christian customs piously observed, but a fresh, untried joy, the joy of today. Perhaps we wonder if the news of great joy is not irrelevant to the reality of our lives as we consider all the suffering around the world. May we remember that the Nativity took place the first time in a world that was desperate.
Indeed today’s disturbing news reports, the terrorism, the latent insecurity, the violence, war, injustice, racial discrimination, global poverty, sadly confirm that life needs hope. And this is for us to do: to spread hope, to let Christ be born again, to draw from the manger the strength to overcome the world pessimism as we proclaim the unique meaning of Christmas, a foretaste and a pledge of a “new heaven and a new earth.”
This therefore is the Christmas and New Year’s wish to all the parishioners of Sacred Heart of Jesus: that we continue to be a community of hope, “holding high the light of life” (Phil 2:15) which radiates from the Divine Infant, wrapped in swaddling clothes, laying in a manger, in a stable-cave in Bethlehem.
As we share the gift of the Son of God at Christmas, let us remember to share our blessings with our parish in order to help the church spread the good news of the Kingdom of God. Know that we will remember you and your loved-ones at Christmas Midnight Mass.
Peace and Joy this Christmas and always,
Fr. Hilaire, and the Parish staff and Councils.