Praise to this the Holy night,
And all look on in awe.
Christ child born in Holy grace,
Under western star.
Peace to the world this Holy day,
For all who pray in hope.
Christ child born in of Bethlehem,
Under risen sun.
Joy to the world, this Holy day,
Matthew 2: 18
There’s no Christmas in Bethlehem this year.
No Christmas tree, no coloured lights,
no celebrations, no revellers…
There’s too much suffering,
too much violence, too much hatred,
too much resentment, too much oppression.
Too many people are homeless,
too many are refugees, too many are fearful,
too many are hungry, too many are sick.
The Gospel of Matthew tells us the magi brought the gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the newborn Jesus. Gold represented Christ’s kingship, his sovereignty; frankincense represented his divinity; myrrh represented his humanity, his mortality.
Let us consider how these gifts have manifested in our own lives over the past year – taking them in
There will always be Herods in this world: Petty men in large palaces, Murderers of dreams. And there will always be a little Herod in us, scribbling decrees on our map of the Heavens.
There will always be Magi in this world: Followers of the tiny spark, those who will go to the ends of the
This Christmas, may we…
Glimpse the promise of the future, as did Mary
Know our duty, and resist judgement, as did Joseph
Honour new life and praise new creation, as did the shepherds and angels
May we seek wisdom beyond our tradition as did the Magi
Offer hospitality as did the Innkeeper
And in so doing, may
when god was pregnant
her belly swelled up like song
’til she was rounder than the seasons of the world.
her legs grew larger than the questions
raised by wondering boys,
her breasts filled the emptiness
of one moment’s yearning for another.
when god was pregnant the angels
fetched cold towels and practiced breathing,