Nativity of Our Lord 2010
Pastoral message from Father Robert Arida
Brothers and Sisters,
LordŐs birth is an event that summons us to the challenge of faith. The
nativity of Christ is an event that arouses what is often a dormant faith to
encounter GodŐs unconditional love. The feast challenges us to enter with all
our being into the embrace of Christ who takes on our sin and mortality so we
might become God.
the words we use to greet each other during the Nativity Feast, Christ Is Born!
Glorify Him! are simple and clear. Yet, their meaning is difficult since they
require our entering the mystery of an event that defies both reason and
nature. Our hymnody and iconography beautifully express what is ultimately
inexplicable. The Holy Spirit prepares a young virgin to give birth to the Son
of God. The uncontainable God develops as a human being in the womb of his
mother. A virgin gives birth and remains virgin. The King of Glory rests in a
manger. Angels converse with shepherds. Magi follow a star from the Orient
leading them to the true light. Ox and ass know and venerate their master. With
reasonable arguments, Satan tempts Joseph to deny what he encounters. Mary
reclines by her child pondering the incomprehensible.
we celebrate is truly wonderful and mysterious. But often, because we cannot
transcend the limitations of what is rational and logical, we behold the Feast
from a distance unable to be enveloped by its healing and uncreated
wonder and mystery of our LordŐs nativity - its unceasing joy - is bound to a
living faith that is aware of its own doubts and distractions. It is a living
faith that allows us to surrender to GodŐs love and care. It is a living faith
that brings us into the saving mystery of ChristŐs incarnation – a
mystery beyond nature and reason, a mystery filled with the light of wisdom. It
is through a living faith that we will be able to offer others the wonder and
joy of God becoming a child for the life of the world and its salvation.
love in Christ,