Now that we are in to the Christmas season, it's good to reflect on the joys of the Good News celebrated in the festive liturgy. Although I say it every year, it seems only this time around did a larger number of people than usual take up the message and come to Mass during Christmas night - including many of our children. It's a great memory to give children and really makes Christmas a little different from the usual Sunday Mass and thereby adds to the excitement and making coming to Church exiting and unusual is surely a good memory to give to our children. It helps to set their Christmas apart from their friends that don't go out into the darkness late at night to welcome the light of the Saviour.
Yes - the Magi do arrive early at our crib (it's so small that you need all the figures to make an impact!) We set it up at the back of church now, as one year I had it on the sanctuary in front of the statue of St Catherine Labouré but someone thought it looked like a Hollywood movie perhaps entitled "Attack of the Forty Foot Nun" as she loomed over the crib!
Three wise men and a (diaconal) shepherd!
Pope Benedict XVI speaking about the Holy Family:
"The house of Nazareth is a school of prayer where we learn to listen, to meditate, to penetrate the deepest meaning of the manifestation of the Son of God, drawing our example from Mary, Joseph and Jesus."The Holy Family is an icon of the domestic Church, which is called to pray together. The family is the first school of prayer where, from their infancy, children learn to perceive God thanks to the teaching and example of their parents. An authentically Christian education cannot neglect the experience of prayer. If we do not learn to pray in the family, it will be difficult to fill this gap later. I would, then, like to invite people to rediscover the beauty of praying together as a family, following the school of the Holy Family of Nazareth".