25 - 01 - 2020

Christmas: A Hope to Celebrate and a call to transform!!!

21st century is powered by technology, fuelled by information, driven by knowledge, however there is a longing for a profound spirituality to find answer to the vexing issues of the world. We celebrate today, God’s own very intervention in history in the person of Jesus.

An embodiment of humility rooted in love and compassion.  He humbled Himself . . . wherefore God has highly exalted Him. It is neither sentiment nor fancy that draws the lessons from the Manger. Coming as a baby, born in a stable, wrapped in swaddling clothes, laid in a manger, no room in the inn, attended by cattle, worshiped by shepherds, — what are all these but mystical symbols of the greatness of Lord, showing that, earth has no honors to bestow that are worthwhile to God; teaching us in this age of sordid wealth, that kingliness lies in character alone; that no ladder can ever reach to heaven that is not planted lowly on the ground? How great the contrast when Christ was born between Caesar Augustus and that little Babe; but mark the difference. "His birth into the world has forever exalted the spiritual above the material, the territory of love above the territory of power."This celebration instills in us, an enkindling hope that can handle any despair.

Christians have been in this land for almost 2000 years and have made, and continue to make significant impact, though small but not negligible.  It is challenging to quantify these services in terms of numbers but you can judge for yourself that magnitude of service rendered in diverse fields.Christians in collaboration with likeminded communities have engendered education at every level even to the remotest corners of India and to the downtrodden. The community have engaged in the eradication of poverty and superstition, in order to bring positive social transformation. The ministry of healing ledthe community to organized health care systems while reaching out to the abandoned and downtrodden. Mother Theresa, Mariam Thresia and many others are the loud witness of that compassionate love.The Christian homesacross this nation are houses of prayer that emanates love and compassion.

As we celebrate the birth of the Lord, We hope that our faith inspires you to be just, loving, humble, and merciful. We hope that our faith inspires you to encourage the institutions to be more just, more loving, more humble, and more merciful. We hope, you find community here, people who will support you, love you, and challenge you. We hope that your faith community inspires you to reach out to the larger community—to love others, to challenge them and support them. We hope that our faith inspires you to care for those in need, to be like the shepherd who has the smell of the sheep, to perform the corporal and spiritual works of mercy, to be mercy for others. We hope that when the world makes it difficult to live out our faith that you will help usto strengthenand persevere.

Birth of Jesus remind us of the struggle for an identity. His mother travelled to account for their existence with in the geographical boundary.  They could not find a place expect that in a cowshed to give birth. The God of the universe was born in a manger. A beautiful message that God is born among our struggles. This birth redlined the narrow geographical and cultural boundaries. The world around us seems to  extricate themselves from the impact of globalization with protectionist policies in trade and commerce, by stroking fears of loss of identity and nationality with pseudo-patriotic and fundamentalist rhetoric, by setting their faces decidedly against immigration, by attempting to re-write history to suit narrow, sectarian agendas, and by seeking to perpetuate the gains of unfettered capitalism, colonialism and technological superiority, but there are also signs of a counter-current. The celebration of the birth of Christ is call to accept the other and find a neighbor not by narrow geographical narrative but as a person in need.

Humility is not a fashionable virtue today; it would be seen rather as a condition calling for therapy – a mousey obsequiousness that could probably be traced back to an unhappy childhood. But the mere sight of the savior being born in the in a cowshed ought to be enough to dispel that view.

May the Christmas bring you the gifts of love, peace, and joy and unfold for you a year full of grace and contentment…..

May the blessings of the newborn babe bless us all…….God bless India.

 

Fr. (Dr.) Paul Pudussery csc