Categories: HomiliesPublished On: December 25th, 2020Tags: , 556 words16.8 min read
Merry Christmas

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Merry Christmas

As I get older, I like to remember Christmases of the past. As I let my mind wonder, I sometimes surprise myself with what I remember. Christmas has become memories, most good and wonderful, some still a challenge.  Many Christmases our churches will have the little children reenact Joseph and Mary coming to Bethlehem. The children will walk up the middle aisle. They have been carefully instructed to count ten pews, stop, and ask the person at the end of pew if there is any room for them at the inn. Of course, we all know the story, and whoever is sitting at the end of pew quickly grasps what is happening and they kindly say to the little children, “No, there is no room at the inn.” Everyone experiences the sinking feeling the children feel. You can hear the words in their minds saying, “But this is Jesus!” It starts to settle in that there is no room and that this is terribly wrong.

We want to make room. We should make room. Well, one year, as the little play was unfolding, Joseph and Mary were walking up the aisle of the church. And at the second stop they asked the question, “Is there any room at the inn?” And to everyone’s surprise, the man at the end of the pew had his family scrunch over and invited the children to sit beside him. This was shocking! We all knew the story. This was not supposed to happen. The children did not know what to do so they sat down next to the man who invited them. Mary and Joseph just kind of huddled together whispering to themselves as to what they should do. The play came to a screeching halt. Joseph and Mary had found shelter.

When the religious education director realized what had happened, she went looking for her lost Joseph and Mary. I mean she had twenty shepherds waiting in the wings. We had to get to the manger scene! Shepherds do not have much patience. This was and is a good lesson. It only takes one kind act of charity to change the whole world. Everyone had a good chuckle, but the imprint on our hearts was forever. The story of Joseph and Mary finding room with a stranger will live forever for those who were there that night.

The birth of a child must live forever in our hearts this day. Jesus changed the world. He changes each of us. Sometime today you will have a few seconds to look into a mirror. What do you see? Let your mind float back to Christmases of the past. Can you still visualize yourself as a child? I hope so. Remember the hopes you once had. Some have come true, others dropped as you realized what you were being called to do. Christmas is a time to remember your hopes and dreams. It is also a time to recognize the hope in the world even under the most difficult circumstances. This Christmas create a memory of hope for those around you.

May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen