Monday, December 24, 2018

More than at any other point in our lifetimes, this Church has needed the Light of a Child to guide – and indeed, redeem – it...

...and not soon enough, that's the Coming we celebrate tonight.

To one and all, your loved ones and those you serve, every wish for a Blessed Christmas – may all the joy, goodness and new life the Bambino brings be yours on this Holy Night and all through the days ahead.

On a housekeeping note, once tonight's Vatican Midni – er, 9.30pm – Mass is in the can, this scribe's taking the Octave to catch up on sleep and grab some downtime with the clan. It's been a long, grueling six months, and Lord knows we can all use a quiet stretch, so here's to soaking it up to the hilt. The Show picks up on 2 January given the opening of the USCCB's Pope-mandated Retreat at Mundelein (a moment the bench has greeted with no end of griping).

Overwhelming as the experience of this cycle has been, the line used since time immemorial as part of the Gospel of Christmas Day has felt all the more resonant: "The light shines in the darkness / and the darkness has not overcome it."

To all of you who've shone this Light in the midst of these days – in so many ways in the trenches, and especially through all the kindness, encouragement and understanding you've beamed this way amid the waves – no words can say thanks enough... just know how it'll always be an unforgettable grace.

Christus Natus Est pro nobis – Venite adoremus! Buon Natale a tutti – however young or otherwise we might be, may the gifts and lessons of this Night never grow old. Merry Christmas, Church!