December 25, 2011: Christmas
Catholic Social Teaching: Life and Dignity of the Human Person
Readings from Midnight Mass
First Reading: Isaiah 9:1-6
Second Reading: Titus 2:11-14
Gospel: Luke 2:1-14
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church
Isaiah 9:5 paragraphs 490 and 491
“The promise of peace that runs through the entire Old Testament finds its fulfillment in the very person of Jesus…” paragraph 491
The Christmas liturgy readings, from the twilight of the vigil to brightness of a new day, refrain with words of promise, hope and joy. But these concepts fail to hold meaning without a change of our hearts. For Emanuel, God with us, implores perception beyond an infant figure in a creche, to abandon lawless and godless ways to live temperately, justly and devoutly. Advent is over, the waiting ceased and have we pondered deeply the essence of the invitation to bask in the light of conversion? Will we take the words of the Gospel to heart, by shaking off the sugar coating, and acknowledging the challenges? When you receive the Eucharist, this Christmas Day, will you let the Prince of Peace say, “Peace be with you” and resolve to live peace in the world. Will you stop condoning war and violence in both subtle and personified modalities, along with racism and greed? For Christmas to harken meaning, the superficial wrapping and ornamental bows inherent in words of platitude must be removed for the depth of fulfilled prophecy to transform our hearts.
Individual Reflection: Isaiah 9:1-6
Instead of spending the day eating lavishly with friends or family, refrain from being isolated from the reality of the world. Be a presence to people that are homeless by helping serve food, listening and talking with them at a community meal.
Family Reflection: Titus 2:11-14
Take the favorite gift you received for Christmas and give it to someone in need.
The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concerns.