Thursday, December 24, 2015


This beautiful story about the significance of Christmas comes via Ron Rolheiser OMI in his piece "The Incarnation Means God is in the Ordinary"

Nikos Kazantzakis, the author of Zorba the Greek, once told this parable...

A man came up to Jesus and complained to him about the hiddenness of God. “Rabbi,” he said, “I am an old man. During my whole life, I have always kept the commandments. Every year of my adult life, I went to Jerusalem and offered the prescribed sacrifices.  “Every night of my life, I have not retired to my bed without first saying my prayers. But . . . I look at stars and sometimes the mountains—and wait, wait for God to come so that I might see him. I have waited for years and years, but in vain. Why, Why? Mine is a great grievance, Rabbi? Why doesn’t God show himself?"
Jesus, in response, smiled gently and said: “Once upon a time there was a marble throne at the eastern gate of a great city. On this throne sat 3,000 kings. All of them called upon God to appear so that they might see him, but all of them went to their graves with their wishes unfulfilled. “Then, when these kings had died, a pauper, barefooted and hungry, came and sat upon that throne. ‘God,’ he whispered, ‘the eyes of a human being cannot look directly at the sun, for they would be blinded. How then, Omnipotent, can they look directly at you?  “Have pity, Lord, temper your strength, turn down your splendor so that I, who am poor and afflicted, may see you! “Then - listen, old man - God became a piece of bread, a cup of cool water, a warm tunic, a hut and, in the front of the hut, a woman giving suck to an infant. 
“Thank you, Lord," he whispered. "You humbled yourself for my sake. You became bread, water, a warm tunic and my wife and son in order that I might see you. And I did see you. I bow down and worship your beloved many-faced face!’”

Tuesday, December 22, 2015


I have been inspired by this and thought you my friends might also like to read this.
This is a rather long quote taken from a recent sermon of our Holy Father Pope Francis: It was quoted by Blessed Oscar Arnulfo Romero, but pronounced for the first time by Cardinal John Dearden:
Every now and then it helps us to take a step back and to see things from a distance. The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is also beyond our visions. In our lives, we manage to achieve only a small part of the marvellous plan that is God’s work. Nothing that we do is complete, which is to say that the Kingdom is greater than ourselves. No statement says everything that can be said. No prayer completely expresses the faith. No Creed brings perfection. No pastoral visit solves every problem. No programme fully accomplishes the mission of the Church. No goal or purpose ever reaches completion. 
This is what it is about: We plant seeds that one day will grow. We water seeds already planted, knowing that others will watch over them. We lay the foundations of something that will develop. We add the yeast which will multiply our possibilities. We cannot do everything, yet it is liberating to begin. This gives us the strength to do something and to do it well. It may remain incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way. 
It is an opportunity for the grace of God to enter and to do the rest. It may be that we will never see its completion, but that is the difference between the master and the labourer. We are labourers, not master builders, servants, not the Messiah. We are prophets of a future that does not belong to us”.