Today as you know, A GREAT NUMBER OF PEOPLE HAVE FORGOTTEN, WILLINGLY, JESUS. One says the words “Merry Christmas”, but the meaning is no longer the birthday of the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity incarnate. A great number of spoiled children expect gifts from their parents as if it were their birthday, but the parents did not teach their children with their words and with their example, to give gifts to this Baby with sacrifices and prayer. For so many people, Christmas is the moment to expect to receive instead of to give, and they are not interested in discovering that Christmas is not their birthday but the birthday of Baby Jesus! This is why during the period after Christmas there are more suicides than in any other period of the year!
When I was young with 5 brothers and sisters in my family, my parents taught us to make small sacrifices of love for others during the period of Advent. EACH TIME THAT WE MADE A SMALL SACRIFICE, WE PUT A PIECE OF STRAW IN AN EMPTY CRIB so that at Christmas the crib was full of pieces of straw which represented the sacrifices for Baby Jesus!
The pamphlet printed by the city where I celebrate my daily Mass here in Italy had the title with the word “Christmas” (Natale) on the front page, but in the 16 pages with the program for the week of this period for this city, ONE DID NOT FIND EVEN ONE TIME THE WORD “JESUS” OR “CHRIST”! But Christmas is the birthday of who? Today there is more “Christophobia” than ever before in the history of the world and of the Church, even though this Baby is the only baby ever born to die for us!
ONE OF THE THINGS MOST IMPORTANT TO GIVE TO OTHERS FOR CHRISTMAS IS OUR PRESENCE, to go and visit friends and relatives. This is what many are craving for at Christmas time remembering with nostalgia this warmth of a true family from their childhood memories. This is why during the period after Christmas there are more suicides than during any other period of the year! This is also the most important gift that we can give to Baby Jesus for His birthday. Let us say before Baby Jesus in the Eucharist in the tabernacle of every Catholic Church the words of the Guardian Angel of Portugal at Fatima: “My God, I believe, I adore, I hope and I love You (and I thank You). I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not love You (and do not thank you)”! (http://www.ewtn.com/fatima/apparitions/angel1.htm).
THE MOST BEAUTIFUL GIFT WE CAN GIVE TO THIS BABY IS OUR LOVING PRESENCE, to be with Him before the tabernacle. Then another very precious gift for this Baby is to help to lead souls to Him offering our sacrifices united to prayer offered to the Mother of this Baby for the conversion of sinners, without which, they do not succeed in pulling themselves out of their indifference and ingratitude, and all the sins into which they fell into. We easily forget that this Baby suffers more than we can imagine due to our indifference. The more one loves, the more one suffers due to the tragic indifference and ingratitude of so many people today! In the families, when the child does not think about how much the parents have done for the child, the mother and the father suffer and lament. But Jesus does not lament openly, but He remains in silence in the pain of abandonment on the cross, leaving us totally free to respond to His immense love with gratitude or to not respond to His immense love with gratitude.
WE CANNOT IMAGINE HOW MUCH JESUS SUFFERED ON THE CROSS FOR OUR SINS. The saints tell us, such as Saint Padre Pio, that Christ, in a mysterious way, will suffer for our sins until the end of time, until the end of the world. This is why the saints speak of making reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary! (Visit: “An Open Letter To A Fellow Priest” (http://testimony-polo.blogspot.com/2009/11/open-letter-to-fellow-priest.html).
LET US GO TO FIND THIS “DIVINE PRISONER”, as the saints call Him, in the tabernacle to be with Him. Jesus rejoices for our company, the relationship with our little hearts, our misery that, if we recognize this our misery and ask for His mercy, He will give us this great gift of His divine Mercy. Then let us offer our gratitude to this Baby, and let us promise to pass more time with Him during the year with the help of His Mother with the Holy Rosary in hand.
“Each day, when he had finished his work, he would go straight from the college to the church. There before Christ present in the Eucharist he would spend long hours in prayer and contemplation. The God of whom he spoke was the same God who was in his heart” (SAINT JOHN OF KENTY, Office of Readings, December 23).
The Eucharist is “the SOURCE AND SUMMIT of the Christian life” (VCII: LG 11; CCC 1324)!
“As for ourselves, how often do we come to church without thinking what we are going to do or for what we are going to ask. … I often think that when we come to adore our Lord we should get all we ask if we asked for it with a lively faith and a pure heart” (SAINT JOHN MARY VIANNEY, Office of Readings, August 4).
“I find myself so weak that were it not for Holy Communion I would fall continually. One thing alone sustains me, and that is Holy Communion. From it I draw my strength; in it is all my comfort. I fear life on days when I do not receive Holy Communion. I fear my own self. Jesus concealed in the Host is everything to me. FROM THE TABERNACLE I DRAW STRENGTH, POWER, COURAGE AND LIGHT. Here, I seek consolation in time of anguish. I would not know how to give glory to God if I did not have the Eucharist in my heart” (Diary of Saint Faustina, no. 1037).
“THIS BREAD OF THE STRONG GIVES ME ALL THE STRENGTH I NEED to carry on my mission and the courage to do whatever the Lord asks of me. The courage and strength that are in me are not of me, but of Him who lives in me - it is the Eucharist” (Diary, 91).
“Oh, if only all souls knew who is living in our churches, THERE WOULD NOT BE SO MANY OUTRAGES AND SO MUCH DISRESPECT IN THESE HOLY PLACES” (Diary, 409).
“I will not allow myself to be so absorbed in the whirlwind of work as to forget about God. I WILL SPEND ALL MY FREE MOMENTS AT THE FEET OF THE MASTER HIDDEN IN THE BLESSED SACRAMENT. He has been tutoring me from my most tender years” (Diary, 82).
“He loved the most holy Eucharist also with complete single-mindedness, often adoring it for hours on end in the sanctuary of the church and longed to receive it as often as possible as the food of his soul” (SAINT MARTIN DE PORRES, Office of Readings, November 3).
“THE DREAM OF ST. JOHN BOSCO” of the two pillars indicates to us the great importance of staying very close to Jesus in the Eucharist (while it is still possible) with our Rosary in hand. (Visit: http://thereedofgod.blogspot.com/2010/04/don-boscos-prophecy-of-two-columns.html).
SAINT PADRE PIO said: "It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do so without the Holy Mass." This saint also said: “The Rosary is the weapon for these times”!
THE IMAGES OF THE FIRST 5 MYSTERIES OF THE HOLY ROSARY, the Joyful mysteries, that parents can show and explain to their children in order to help them meditate and enter into these sacred mysteries of the life of Jesus, which is the heart of the Holy Rosary, the meditation, can be found at: http://cibo-spir.blogspot.it/2013/12/natale-2013.html .
In English we say “Merry Christmas”! THE WORD CHRISTMAS MEANS CHRIST MASS! Perhaps this is why in so many places in the countries of Europe and in the United States it is prohibited the word in public: “Christmas”. Where are the true Christians to fight this horrendous “Christophobia”?
EVERY HOLY MASS IS CHRISTMAS when Baby Jesus is born on the altar when the Priest says the words: “This is my Body… This is my Blood”!
WITHOUT THE WORDS: “This is My Body” and “This is … My Blood”, the Mass is not valid and there is no Eucharist, the infinite God under the appearance of bread and wine.
A Mass of the Roman Rite is invalid: 1) WHEN the celebrant of the Mass is not a validly ordained priest, 2) WHEN the priest does not have the proper intention, 3) WHEN wheat bread or grape wine is not used, 4) or WHEN the words “This is my Body” or “This is … my Blood” are not said by the Priest during the consecration of the Mass. (http://www.cuf.org/faithfacts/details_view.asp?ffID=188).
THE CATECHISM OF THE COUNCIL OF TRENT (or The Catechism for Parish Priests) states very precisely that “the form consists of these words: This is My Body and This is ... My Blood”.
“The essential signs of the Eucharistic sacrament are wheat bread and grape wine, on which the blessing of the Holy Spirit is invoked and the priest pronounces the words of consecration spoken by Jesus during the Last Supper: “This is my body which will be given up for you.... This is the cup of my blood....”.” (CCC 1412).
THE OTHER PARTS OF THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER ARE, according to St. Ambrose (also quoted in Summa Theologica), ESSENTIALLY PREPARATORY; "by all the other words spoken, praise is rendered to God, prayer is put up for the people, for kings, for others, but when the time comes for perfecting the Sacrament, the priest no longer uses his own words but the words of Christ." St. Thomas Aquinas also explains this requirement in great detail in Summa Theologica (Third Part, Question 78, Articles 1 through 6).
Lumen Gentium 25 clearly teaches that the documents of an ecumenical council are infallible (CCC 891). The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 888-892; www.vatican.va/archive/ccc/) tell us that the doctrines of the Church are essential in order to arrive to sanctity. “When the Church through its supreme Magisterium proposes a doctrine “for belief as being divinely revealed,” and as the teaching of Christ, the definitions “must be adhered to with the obedience of faith.” This infallibility extends as fare as the deposit of divine Revelation itself” (CCC 891). But to the ordinary teaching of the Church “the faithful are to adhere to it with religious assent” which, though distinct from the assent of faith, is nonetheless an extension of it” (CCC 892). Thus the documents in an ecumenical council express in human language the absolute truths which cannot be changed, EVEN BY A FUTURE POPE FOR APPARENTLY GOOD MOTIVES TO MAKE THE NON CATHOLICS FEEL MORE AT EASE (at a Catholic Mass!) (false ecumenism, false mercy, misguided compassion, false love!)! Before the New World Order totally manifests itself, there is needed to be in place a One World Church with a beautiful façade of counterfeit holiness which “will be emptied of all divine content and will be the mystical body of the antichrist” (read the words of Cardinal Biffi and Archbishop Fulton Sheen, visit: http://spir-food.blogspot.it/2013/02/resignation-of-pope-benedict.html).
The Church is the handmaid of the Truth and not the Author of the Truth which is God! The Truth is absolute even though we are living in a world today in which the culture totally refuses the possibility of the absolute Truth. These very numerous modern “enlightened” people of today say that the Truth must change according to the world, according to the consensus of the majority, and even according to each (“wise and intelligent”!; Mt 11:25) individual; this is exactly relativism which Pope Benedict XVI said is "the most profound difficulty of our time"!
MAY YOU HAVE A BLESSED CHRISTMAS in the presence of Baby Jesus together with Mary, His Mother, and Saint Joseph!
Father Joseph Dwight