Christmas Message From Father Steven

Dear beloved in Christ,

With all my heart, I wish to you and all your dear ones a most blessed Christmas, filled with the joy and peace of Christ.

I have many Christmas hymns that I love, but one of my favorites is “O Come, All Ye Faithful.” I can hardly contain myself, when I hear the first line arising from the congregation on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning:

“O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant,

O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem.

Come and behold him, born the King of Angels

O come, let us adore him,

O come, let us adore him,

O come let us adore him, Christ the Lord.”

The great blessing!—to be among the joyfully, triumphantly faithful, adoring the infant King, our Savior and Lord. As we adore together our humble Savior, who will exchange his wooden manger for the wood of the Cross, we cut right through all the holiday sentimentalism that sadly hides and often diminishes the true meaning of Christmas.

Here in this place we adore the Truth, what our Savior has done for us, and what he will yet do for us in His mercy.  For we all know, in the deepest honesty of our heart, that after the last present is opened and the Christmas lights are turned off, we will continue to experience brokenness within ourselves and our families, we will continue to be aware of our sinful tendencies and deep unfulfilled yearnings—in short, we will feel our need for what this Child of Mary has come into the world to do for us: to save us!

May God continue to give us the faith of Mary and Joseph, of the shepherds and the wisemen, so that the deep ocean of saving love and mercy held in that infant heart may be our continual joy through out this coming year. With the same gift of faith, let us obey the message of the angels: “Do not be afraid.”

How can we possibly be afraid to receive the infant Christ from the arms of Mary and hold him very close. How can we be afraid, when God comes to us in the gentle, tender bearing of an infant, where all is warmth, tenderness and joy. God has not come to condemn us, but to save us. We no longer need be afraid of the brokenness and sin in our hearts. Come Lord Jesus; come and save us.

In the communion we receive on this Holy Feast, may it be our one hope and prayer for Jesus’ mercy to have its way, for all to be made new this Christmas Day. Yes, let us indeed adore him, the Savior of the world!

God love and keep you,
Fr. Steven


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