Fourth Sunday of Advent
Wernher von Braun played a prominent role in all aspects of rocketry and space exploration. He was a key scientist in getting us to the moon. He was once asked do you believe in God? He said: “Yes I certainly believe in God, but I will tell you He is a lot bigger than we thought!”
The space explorers confirm our age-old faith in the All-Powerful God, the Pantocrator of the Bible. Telescopes have shown us billions of Galaxies. Our galaxy, the Milky Way, takes our sun and our planets at a speed of around 448,000 mph 230 million years to get around it one time! How unimaginably huge and powerful is our God Who created all this with a word!
Christmas celebrates the miracle of miracles of this great God’s embracing humanity by becoming human without losing His Divinity! This wonderful mighty God now has a human face and a kind human heart that we can approach without fear.
Pope Francis beautifully said: “This is the gift we find at Christmas. We discover to our amazement that the Lord is absolute gratuity, absolute tender love! His glory does not overwhelm us: His presence does not terrify us. He is born in utter poverty to win our hearts by the wealth of His love!” Jesus loved to remind us that He is not only God’s Son but also the “Son of Man”. He said this 81 times in the Gospels!
Pope Benedict XV1 of blessed memory shares his reflection on Christmas: “God is so great so that He can become so small. God is so powerful that He can make Himself so vulnerable and come to us as a defenseless child so that we can love Him. God is so good that he can give up his divine splendor, and come down in a stable so that we might find Him, so that his goodness may touch us, and give itself to us and continue to work through us.”
Mary carried this tiny precious Divine and Human Being with “a love beyond all telling”! Oh that we could receive this gift of all gifts, Jesus, like His mother! “He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:11f
Christmas is the wonderful beginning of a new friendship with Jesus. It is our yes to His invitation: Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Mt 11:29
Fr. Bob Weiss, C.P. preaches Parish Missions and is a member of the Passionist Community in Louisville, Kentucky.