Christmas is time to celebrate Jesus’ light
Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 25, 2014
Each Christmas, my memories go back to the happiness of a home where the birthday of Jesus was celebrated with faith and love. Each Advent night for four weeks before Christmas we prayed, praising God and thanking him for the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem two thousand years ago.
We also were taught to praise God for the presence of Jesus in all of us every day. I have never forgotten my mother’s prayer: “Infant Jesus, meek and mild, come to me, a little child. Pity mine and pity me, and suffer me to come to thee.”
When we came home from church, we would open our packages of toys and candy. After Christmas dinner we walked two miles to the Franciscan monastery to pray before the nativity scene. We thanked God for sending his son as a little baby.
While I did not understand the meaning of the words Incarnation of Christ, I certainly knew that we as a family were thanking God for sending Jesus to us as our savior and brother.
It is a joy to recall the childhood memories of decades ago, but always a new joy to celebrate now. As a minister of the Gospel, it is an inspiration to celebrate with the families of Vicksburg and see Christ present among them.
The word Christmas means Christ’s Mass. Christmas is a time for us to recognize the presence of Jesus with us amid all of the distractions.
As we remember our own childhood experiences, we are challenged to follow Christ the Light of the World this Christmas. We all live in need of his light. We ask Jesus who became a little child to be our guiding light.
In celebrating this Christmas, I remember a preacher who said, “Jesus who was laid in a wooden crib at his birth was nailed to a wooden cross as he died for us.” Jesus who redeemed us by his life, death and resurrection still lives, loves, heals and pardons.
He is our Saving Lord each day of our lives.
Rev. Thomas J. Lalor is the pastor at St. Paul Catholic Church. He can be reached by phone at 601-636-0140.