John 1:14

December 24, 2013 Christmas Homily for 2013

Filed under: Blog — admin at 9:36 pm on Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas 2013


          Wherever people go, they always want to get the best seats. We even did this when we were little when we used to call “shotgun” when we got into the car. If we go to the movies or a concert, we want to get up close and personal so we can see everything that is going on and maybe even snap a selfie with our smart phone at the place so we can make our friends jealous on facebook or twitter. We don’t want to miss anything. Even today, how many of you arrived early so that you could get a good seat. Maybe it is just that today you want to get a seat period. For Catholics, the good seats for some reason are usually in the back of Church. Why? I don’t know.

          On this great feast of the Birth of our Lord, God is in fact turning the tables on all of us. Why did become man? Why was Jesus born of the Virgin Mary? While there may be many possible answers, I think that one of the simplest reasons is that God wanted not only a good seat in this world, but the BEST seat.

          From the beginning, God has been personally involved with his people in various ways, through angels, Moses, Kings, the prophets, and even great signs like the burning bush and the rainbow or the parting of the Red Sea. But today, it is different. The Messenger is now his own Son. It is God himself who has come down to earth, born of the Virgin Mary. As the Word become Flesh, God’s first seat was the lap of Mary his mother and the arms of Joseph his foster-father.  From that seat he saw the shepherds, the angels and even the Wise men.

          From there his seat is the manger, where in a wooden cradle he comes to rule not with the earthly power of armies, but with the heavenly power of unconditional infinitely generous love. We know that he will not be sitting for long. The Lord did not come merely as a spectator, but as one who will save the world from sin, emptiness and death. He will grow in wisdom, age and grace and filled with the Holy Spirit, he will preach the Kingdom of his heavenly Father, heal the sick in both body and soul, and bring hope to those who only know despair, fear and loneliness. He comes first to watch, and then he will act.

          We see from both St. Luke and St. Matthew that the shepherds come and see, and then go out to tell others of this great gift. The Angels come and then proclaim the message to the shepherds, the wise men come and then go back by a different way. We are also invited to come and see the child in the manger, with his arms outstretched, wrapped in swaddling clothes. He is the one who will fulfill our every hope and calm our every fear.

          Like the shepherds on that silent Christmas night, we too come, not just to worship and thank God for the gift of his Son and pray for his help. We also come to receive the gift as equally mysterious as the birth of Jesus Christ himself, the real body and blood of Jesus Christ, the Holy Eucharist.

          We come here tonight wanting a seat in God’s house, not recognizing until now that God become man so that he could receive the best seat in our house, which is the heart of every single one of us. God does not want to be put in the cheap seats, where we put him when we act as if there are other things or persons that are more important. He also does not want to get stuck in the middle rows, where others things cloud his vision and the gift of his life that he wants to share with us. He wants the front row, the best seat so he can guide us, encourage us, forgive us and love us.

          God deserves the best seat in the house of our soul because after all, he is the one who created it. He created our soul and with our parents gave us life. Through the gift of faith and the sacrament of Baptism, he recreated us, making it possible for us to really share the true and lasting love he has for us.

          So, as we recall the birth of the new born Christ child, the Lord takes a seat on our lap, which for the baby is always the best seat. Now, tonight and every single day, Jesus wants the best seat in our life, our own heart. He paid the price by the blood he shed on the cross for us. May we welcome him front and center in our our hearts and souls every day, so that when we die, we will be given the best seat in heaven. This seat will be easy to get though, because in the presence of Jesus Christ, every seat is the best one.

    May you all have a Blessed Christmas.



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