Pointing at the bulletin letter's date (link) at left will display it's title.
December 31, 2006
A Happy New Year!Again, we find ourselves at the end of an old year and at the beginning of a New Year. What have we done with the old and more importantly, what shall we do with the New?
Shall we make resolutions we will forget in the next few weeks? Will we limit ourselves to resolutions such as losing weight or finishing the repairs in our home do or die? Perhaps we might want to deepen our insights and focus on more than the concrete and physical aspects of our lives.
This Sunday’s liturgy gives us a good place to begin. The Feast of the Holy Family helps us to reflect of a theme that is extremely important in our lives if we are to be happy, i.e., the idea of good family values. Briefly stated, the liturgy tells us that our family should be replete with love and respect for one another. Children must love and respect their parents. Parents must love and respect their children as well as one another. This includes respect for our aging parents, not simply because of all they have done for us but more importantly because they are children of God and consequently deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.
Secondly, we can look at how we live our life of faith. Fr. John Kavanaugh, S.J. gives us a good perspective on this point. He says that atheists are probably on to something when they say that religion should be banned or eliminated completely. They believe this because they see many people who claim to be religious yet have committed some of the most atrocious crimes in the history of mankind. The problem, Kavanaugh states, is that atheists miss one important point. It is not that people of religion, in our case Christian, are forced to do inhuman or nasty things because they are religious. Rather it is because they are not Christian enough. In response to this Kavanaugh challenges us with the following plan.
Maybe, he says, “we should be true Christmas-ists. These are people who actually take the Gospels seriously.” Some of these beliefs are:
l. We humans stand in need of redemption. Thus we call out, “O come, Emmanuael.”
2. We believe, that God came to us, became one os us, even in our lowliness as a dependent baby and broken man.
3. We believe this fact changes everything, including how we treat each other, even the least of us made in the likeness of God.
4. We believe that we are saved not by arms, money, class or nation but by the kind mercies of God.
Kavanaugh concludes, “if Christians believed in Christmas, they would indeed be dangerous, but for reasons quite different from those the atheists fear. They would have finally courageously embraced the revolution started not by human effort, but by divine love.”
Do we dare to take up the challenge for this New Year? I’m willing if you are!
Lorette P. Nault