Vol: 44, No.5 CHRISTMAS- MIDNIGHT MASS ( A) December 25 2016  
 
LITURGY AND LIFE

There is a beautiful story about a little boy who was looking at various statues in the Christmas Crib. His father was explaining to him the role of the cows, the camels, the lambs, the shepherds, the three wise men, the angels, Mother Mary and St Joseph. Suddenly the boy heard some sound in the sky. Something was moving up there in the sky. He asked his father about it and the father told him that it was an aeroplane and there were people inside. The little boy asked him, “Daddy, how did the people go up there?” The Father’s answer was quite thought-provoking. He said, “The people don’t go up, the aeroplane comes down and takes people up there.”
This is what happened on the Christmas day. People did not go up, God came down. He came down like a baby. He came down to the level of the poor, the neglected, the oppressed, the marginalized, the forsaken and the outcastes.
1. This coming down meant Love: “God so loved the world that he sent his only Son so that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” It was not out of the sense of duty that God came down to us, nor for his own sake. Dr C. S. Lewis speaks of four kinds of loves: affection, friendship, charity and eros. God expressed all these kinds of love through Jesus. Even though a mother

 

may forget her child but God will never forget us (Isa 49:15). Jesus has called his disciples friends (Jn 15:15). God loved us while we were yet sinners (Rom 5: 7). St Paul tells the husbands to love their wives as Christ has loved his Church (Eph 5:25) Fr John Powel speaks of two kinds of loves: Need love and Gift love. God loved the world with gift love – a total self-giving.
2. This coming down meant Sacrifice: God sacrificed the comfort zone of heaven, the honour and reputation of a king and was born of a virgin in simple ordinary cow-shade. He sacrificed his title as a master and served his own followers. He sacrificed his title as a teacher when he pointed to the birds of the air and flowers of the field and asked his disciples to learn from them.
3. This coming down meant fellowship: God became one with those who were ostracized. He came down to have a table fellowship with the sinners and the tax collectors. He came down to touch the lepers and dead bodies (daughter of Jairus and son of the widow of Nain).
God came down to the level of human beings. Am I ready to come down to the level of my fellow human beings? What are the hurdles in this process? What am I going to do in order to overcome these hurdles?

– Fr (Dr) Robert B. D’Souza

We wish all the users and the well-wishers of
THE SUNDAY LITURGY
a joyful CHRISTMAS.
May the Child whose birth you have
been awaiting brighten your lives!

– Editor & Staff

December 2016 READINGS OF THE WEEK Psalter Week 1
26 Mon (R) St Stephen, Feast, Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59/ Ps 31:3-4, 6, 8, 16-17/ Mt 10:17-22
27 Tue (W) ST JOHN, Ap, Ev, Feast, 1 Jn 1:1-4/ Ps 97:1-2, 5-6, 11-12/ Jn 20:1, 2-8
28 Wed (R) Holy Innocents, Feast, 1 Jn 1:5–2:2/ Ps 124:2-5, 7-8/ Mt 2:13-18
29 Thu (W) St Thomas Becket, 1 Jn 2:3-11/ Ps 96:1-2-3, 5-6/ Lk 2:22-35
30 Fri (W) HOLY FAMILY, Feast, Sir 3:2-6, 12-14 or Col 3:12-21/ Ps 128:1-5/ Mt 2:13-15, 19-23
31 Sat (W) St Sylvester I, 1 Jn 2:18-21/ Ps 96:1-2, 11-13/ Jn 1:1-18
Forthcoming Issues
CHRISTMAS- MIDNIGHT MASS
1234 5678
Cycle A
Copyright © 2015 St Pauls India.