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Vol: 46, No.5 CHRISTMAS: MASS AT MIDNIGHT ( C) December 24 2018  
participation in the feast of our Redeemer’s Nativity, may through an
honourable way of life become worthy of union with him. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Christmas and Easter are the two major feasts in the Christian calendar. The former celebrates the birth of Jesus while the latter celebrates his resurrection. Both these feasts are preceded by a time of preparation called the Advent and Lent respectively. Today we reflect on the joyous coming of Jesus. His birth took place around 6 B.C. when Herod the great was King of Judea and Caesar Augustus was the Emperor of Rome. At this time God’s intervention in human history opened a new chapter. God’s intervention on behalf of the Hebrews enslaved in Egypt through the able leadership of Moses was the beginning of the story of salvation. A millennium passed and God decided to intervene decisively in the history of the people by sending the promised Messiah who was his own Son. At Christmas we celebrate the Birth of God’s Son, Jesus Christ.
Jesus was born to simple parents under harsh circumstances for they were on the way to Bethlehem to register themselves because the emperor had issued an edict to that effect. They wrapped the Child in swaddling clothes and placed him in a
manger. Out in the countryside heavenly messengers appeared to a group of shepherds keeping watch over their sheep at night. The shepherds were immensely surprised to see a host of heavenly beings singing and praising God, something nobody else had seen ever before. The shepherds were the first ones to behold the Child Jesus. This was the new beginning of the human history. The Child Jesus grew and became an extraordinarily gifted human person able to attract multitudes of people to himself because he was fully human and fully divine. His humanity made him associate himself fully with the suffering humanity and used his divine power to teach and heal and liberate the people oppressed by the many evils in society. This is what Jesus continues to do in every generation of people. Having experienced Jesus as Lord, believers celebrate every aspect of his life; his birth, his resurrection and his mission. And all peoples of goodwill join them. May the celebration of Christmas bring unity and peace in the world because he is the Lord of peace. HAPPY CHRISTMAS!
– AK
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