Dear friends and relatives,
How are you? I HOPE YOU HAD TIME TO PRAY in silence before Baby Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament so as to celebrate Christmas for the One WHOSE BIRTHDAY we celebrate and not for all the other motives and desires that we have allowed our secular world in recent years to instill into our heads and hearts. How many of our children have been spoiled in waiting for presents at Christmas and have not learned from their parents that Christmas is a time to bring to this divine Baby presents of prayers, sacrifices and adoration? This Baby came to serve, not to be served. How many of us have remained spiritually immature like children who never learned to serve others as their parents and many others had done for them. For these undeveloped people religion exists to serve them; for them religion does not exist to help us discover the will of Baby Jesus and then, with the help of the saving Sacraments, to do the will of this Baby. The will of this Baby for each of us is the best thing we could possibly do for ourselves, but we trust in ourselves and not in this Baby Who came to die for each of us!
How much time do we spend with our “DIVINE PRISONER” as Saint Therese would refer to her Beloved in the Eucharist?
How many people go to the beach during the summer months to get a good tan? How many people spend time before the SON to get a good spiritual tan by way of the divine rays emanating to those who are willing to “waste” time before the Creator of the sun and the entire universe? Just as it takes time to get a good sun tan, so too one must spent time before the divine Sun, without hurry, to absorb these PRECIOUS DIVINE RAYS, like milk for babies, drop by drop before the Most Blessed Sacrament! Jesus is a Person; it takes time to develop a personal relationship. Did we go before this divine Baby in the Most Blessed Sacrament, in adoration with the countless angels and saints, to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY JESUS? How many parents teach their children to pray on Christmas like this: “Dear Jesus, for your birthday present, I want to love You, I want to adore You, and I want to be like You. Sweet Mother Mary, lead me to Jesus, hold me in your arms, and give me to Jesus.”
The Servant of God, ARCHBISHOP FULTON SHEEN used to say: “If you want to give precious divine sparks to your loved ones and others, you must spend time before the Divine Fire, the Eucharist!” This Servant of God recommended to all priests to make A HOLY HOUR BEFORE THE MOST BLESSED SACRAMENT EACH DAY; he recommended a half hour for the laity. For more than 12 years now I have faithfully put these words into practice.
“It is only in eternity that we shall know THE GREAT MYSTERY EFFECTED IN US BY HOLY COMMUNION. O most precious moments of my life!” (Saint Faustina, Diary 840).
Just about everybody likes to see a cute baby. Often when I go to dinner in the homes of various families, when there is a cute little child present, the child gets all the attention. So too, Christmas is a special time.
But we so easily forget that THE BABE OF CHRISTMAS IS THE INFINITE GOD before whom the angels and saints adore continually with great delight and joy in
Two thousand years ago many expected a great Messiah in grand splendor who would liberate them from their oppressors; the great majority did not recognize this poor baby born in a cold stable for animals WHO CAME RATHER TO LIBERATE US FROM THE DOMINION OF SATAN and from our sins which are not even recognized or acknowledge by the great majority of people today. As Pope Pius XII and Pope John Paul II indicated to us, our greatest sin today is that WE HAVE LOST THE SENSE OF SIN and thus we have no need of a Redeemer; so many have willingly embraced relativism so as to live in practice as if they were gods as Adam and Eve did, deciding good and evil for themselves (Gen 3:4-5). Thus who needs Christmas except for perhaps a childhood nostalgia or a longing for a wholesome family environment which was more common 50 or 60 years ago. When this nostalgia no longer suits our fancies, any Christmas manifestations will be OUTLAWED IN THE “
The infinite God became incarnate in meekness and humility (Mt 11:29) so as to respect our free will and not force us to love Him; forced or manipulated love is not love at all! This Baby invites us to imitate Him. “And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted” (Mt 23:12; Lk 14:11; 18:14). IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO MAINTAIN THESE TWO EXTREMES: adoration, awe and HUMILITY before the infinite God, in particular before Baby Jesus under the form of consecrated Bread and Wine, and at the same time, CHILDLIKE TRUST AND CONFIDENCE. If we loose one or the other of these two essential elements of our faith, we loose so many graces and perhaps even eternal life itself.
THE DIVINE WISDOM CONTINUES THE SAME STRATEGY TODAY hiding behind and truly identifying Himself with the “little ones” (Mt 25:40) in the poor, outcast, unwanted babies in the womb (Jesus spent 9 months in Mary’s womb!), in non self-sufficient senior citizens, the rejected ones, under the appearance of consecrated Bread and Wine… “I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes” (Mt 11:25)! So too as it was 2000 years ago, few recognize the various Presences of Baby Jesus in our world today.
This Baby did not come to be only in a manger but to SEEK RECEPTIVE AND PREPARED HEARTS OF LOVE AND HUMILITY. The lack of reception of the hotel keepers to receive Joseph and Mary with child is symbolic of the great lack of reception of so many human hearts. Thank God that there was one IMMACULATE HEART totally ready to receive the infinite God into her heart and into her womb; otherwise there would have been no redemption or salvation. So many baptized Catholics do not even have one hour a week to thank the One Who gave them everything in the Eucharist (which means thanksgiving) after a good sincere sacramental confession. IF SOMETHING IS IMPORTANT TO US WE FIND TIME FOR THAT; if something is not so important to us, we just do not seem to get around to it.
We tend to think that Baby Jesus is all happy and blessed in heaven so it really does not matter what we do. But THE MORE ONE LOVES, THE GREATER THE SUFFERING DUE TO THE INDIFFERENCE of the one loved, just as a loving wife suffers greatly due to the indifference of her husband, and vise versa. God loves each of us immensely. For God there is only the eternal present and thus my indifference today puts a nail into Jesus’ hand on the cross today! Jesus said to Saint Faustina: “If My death has not convinced you of My love, what will?” (Diary, 580).
“IF THE ANGELS WERE CAPABLE OF ENVY, they would envy us for two things: one is the receiving of Holy Communion, and the other is suffering” (Saint Faustina; Diary, 1804). Instead we avoid suffering at all costs and do not have time to receive Jesus in the Eucharist each Sunday!
THIS DIVINE BABY WAS THE ONLY ONE EVER BORN TO DIE, as is seen in the Franciscan Christmas images with a cross behind the crib scene. This Baby asks us to follow Him to
“I SISTER FAUSTINA, BY THE ORDER OF GOD, HAVE VISITED THE ABYSSES OF HELL so that I might tell souls about it and testify to its existence. … What I have written is but a pale shadow of the things I saw. But I noticed one thing: that MOST SOULS THERE ARE THOSE WHO DISBELIEVED THAT THERE IS A HELL” (Diary, 741). Most people today have willing accepted the big lie of the father of lies, Satan, that the devil and hell do not exist, so that there are no consequences of how we live! But God, Who is Love, respects our free will and thus our choices; if we choose to reject the Truth (big T”) during our whole life, when we die, we discover that the Truth is God (Jn 14:6) and there are only two places for all eternity!
I SAY ALL THESE THINGS TO YOU BECAUSE I WANT WELL FOR YOU. I do not make the rules, or the Ten Commandments. But if I do not seek to understand these commandments, not according to myself or the world’s comfortable relativistic way, but according to God explained by the lawful authority that Jesus left us here on earth, the Catholic Church with the living Pope as the head, and then transmit these teachings to those I am obligated to do so according to my God-given vocation, I will be severely and eternally judged by the One Who called me to be a Christian and a Priest. Unfortunately there are many priests and bishops today who offer only the comfortable truth but not the uncomfortable truth. WE MUST PROCLAIM THE WHOLE TRUTH, otherwise our proclamation is not true and leads many astray leading to grave and eternal consequences. Our Lady has often asked us to pray for priests and bishops and the Pope so that they do not succumb to human respect and other seductive and subtle temptations of the enemy, Satan, who is far more intelligent than we are.
I hope that you have a Merry and Blessed Christmas not just for now or for this very short life time, but FOR ALL ETERNITY!
Father Joseph Dwight
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P.s. THERE IS ALWAYS HOPE while we are still alive and willing to humbly respond to the graces and inspirations of God to make a good confession. After death our eternal destiny will be fixed for all eternity as it was for the angels in one instant after their creation.
In Saint Faustina’s diary, she recorded that Jesus also indicated that HE HIMSELF IS RIGHT THERE IN THE CONFESSIONAL. Jesus told her, “When you approach the confessional, know this, that I Myself am waiting there for you. I am only hidden by the priest, but I Myself act in your soul. Here the misery of the soul meets the God of mercy. Tell souls that from this fount of mercy souls draw graces solely with the vessel of trust. If their trust is great, there is no limit to My generosity." (1602)
Jesus knew that PEOPLE WOULD REALLY NEED TO HEAR THESE WORDS OF RE-ASSURANCE today, so He went on to say “Come with faith to the feet of My representative...and make your confession before Me. The person of the priest is, for Me, only a screen. Never analyze what sort of a priest that I am making use of; open your soul in confession as you would to Me, and I will fill it with My light." (1725) "Here the misery of the soul meets the God of mercy.” (1602)
MANY FEEL THAT THEIR SINS ARE UNFORGIVABLE BUT, JESUS SAID, “Were a soul like a decaying corpse, so that from a human standpoint, there would be no hope of restoration and everything would already be lost, it is not so with God. The miracle of Divine Mercy restores that soul in full. In the Tribunal of Mercy (the great sacrament of Confession) ...the greatest miracles take place and are incessantly repeated." (1448) "Here the misery of the soul meets the God of mercy.” (1602) Every sin imaginable could be forgiven by Him!
So many people are weighed down by sin and THEIR PRIDEFUL NATURE KEEPS THEM AWAY FROM THE CONFESSION OF THEIR SINS. They are living in misery. Jesus said, “Oh, how miserable are those who do not take advantage of the miracle of God’s mercy! You will call out in vain, but it will be too late." (1448) "Tell aching mankind to snuggle close to My merciful Heart, and I will fill it with peace." (1074) "There is no misery that could be a match for My mercy.” (1273) Jesus came to restore sinners and one would be foolish to turn away from His merciful love.
Regarding this closure of divine mercy, we find in the DIARY OF ST. FAUSTINA: “Oh, what great graces I will grant to souls who say this chaplet; the very depths of My tender mercy are stirred for the sake of those who say the chaplet. Write down these words, My daughter. Speak to the world about My mercy; let all mankind recognize My unfathomable mercy. IT IS A SIGN FOR THE END TIMES; AFTER IT WILL COME THE DAY OF JUSTICE. While there is still time, let them have recourse to the fount of My mercy; let them profit from the Blood and Water which gushed forth for them” (848). “Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion. I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy. If they will not adore My mercy, they will perish for all eternity. Secretary of My mercy, write, tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, BECAUSE THE AWFUL DAY, THE DAY OF MY JUSTICE, IS NEAR” (965). “These words are for you. Do all you possibly can for this work of My mercy. I desire that My mercy be worshiped, and I AM GIVING MANKIND THE LAST HOPE OF SALVATION; that is, recourse to My mercy. My heart rejoices in this feast” (998). “Let the greatest sinners place their trust in My mercy. They have the right before others to trust in the abyss of My mercy. My daughter, write about My mercy towards tormented souls. Souls that make an appeal to My mercy delight Me. To such souls I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy. Write: BEFORE I COME AS JUST JUDGE, I FIRST OPEN WIDE THE DOOR OF MY MERCY. HE WHO REFUSES TO PASS THROUGH THE DOOR OF MY MERCY MUST PASS THROUGH THE DOOR OF MY JUSTICE…” (1146). “Oh, how miserable are those who do not take advantage of the miracle of God’s mercy! You will call out in vain, but IT WILL BE TOO LATE” (1448). “In the Old Covenant I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My merciful heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. BEFORE THE DAY OF JUSTICE I AM SENDING THE DAY OF MERCY” (1588).