At this point, many of us may feel that we are all “Christmased Out”. In other words we may feel that we have had enough of Christmas festivities. The presents are unwrapped. The tree is starting to turn brown. Our full bellies and tighter clothes remind us of our upcoming “New Years Resolutions”.
But the Church reminds us, in a sense, that the party has only begun. Officially, the Christmas Season ends on the Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord (January 12th this year) but some traditions celebrate all the way until the feast of the Presentation of the Lord on February 2. Why the prolonged festivities? Because for us, Christmas is not an annual event that simply comes and passes after 24 hours. Christmas is a game-changer. Christmas tells us that God has visited his people. Christmas shows us the radical, risky, unfathomable love of God, who becomes one of us, so that he may call us to himself. As Pope Benedict XVI once said: “the event of the Incarnation, of God who became man, like us, shows us the daring realism of divine love. God’s action, in fact was not limited to words. On the contrary we might say that he was not content with speaking, but entered into our history, taking upon himself the effort and burden of human life. The Son of God truly became a man.”
God loves us so much that he enters our reality. This is not an event that ended. Jesus remains fully God and fully man as he sits at the right hand of the Father. God has not just visited us, he has made his dwelling among us.
So, let’s keep the party going! Let’s let the joyous celebration continue, and above all let us look at Jesus and see the reckless love of God who desires to come to us, to enter our history, our reality and show us how to radically love, and give of ourselves. God is with us!
In Christ Jesus, Fr. Casey