Christmas 2018

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Make Room for Love

The Word made his dwelling among us (Jn. 1:14).

Perhaps you too have felt a veil of sadness settle over your heart on Christmas Day, of all times…. If we open our windows and look outside, we see artificial lights, poor people with nothing to eat, dead-end streets, children without parents, broken relationships, violent injustices, illegal exploitation, children not permitted to be born, young people who kill themselves, sinking boats, refugees, fallen bridges and raised walls, nature maltreated, turbulent winds…. How can we celebrate Christmas in the midst of all these situations? Is there a truth that rules the world? A life that is life? A love that is love? The evangelist John reminds us that the Word of life made his dwelling among us (Jn. 1:14). The same Word that once proclaimed: “Let there be light” (Gn. 1:3) continues the pitch “the ‘tent’ of his body” in the midst of our profound contradictions, in the midst of our tears and dreams, wounds and hopes.

With the birth of Jesus, we can finally say that God knows each of us in a very personal way–through his own skin, just as we know him through ours. This is Christmas.

“Skin” is not thought or complicated elaboration. It is reality, a body, a relationship, daily life. And Jesus had a body: to communicate, he had to speak; to understand, he had to listen; to move, he had to walk. He experienced feelings; he knew the anxiety of waiting and the tenderness of friendship. He also knew the bitterness of betrayal and experienced anger and disillusionment in the face of human pettiness. But above all he lived in his own skin the intimate joy of an embrace, profound solidarity with all that is human, and love lived to its extreme consequences.

At Christmas, we rediscover that “skin knowledge” is not just a rough and primitive way of approaching reality. It is God’s most intimate way of making room for love, of making room for us!

A very Blessed Christmas to everyone!

Biblical Resonances

Entering the world, Christ says:
“Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
but a body you prepared for me.
Then I said, ‘Behold, I am coming’”
(cf. Hebrews 10:5-7; Psalm 40:7-9).

Francesca Pratillo, fsp

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