Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,
I hope this finds you well on this last Sunday of Advent.
In our gospel passage today, we heard the story of how Mary went to visit her kinswoman, Elizabeth and how the child, who was to become known as John the Baptist, leapt in Elizabeth’s womb at the sound of Mary’s greeting. Perhaps it was Mary’s voice that stirred the child in Elizabeth’s womb, but just as likely, I feel that it was the presence of Jesus in the womb of Mary that caused John to jump for joy at His nearness.
Like John the Baptist, all of us are invited to jump for joy because Jesus is near. We are so close to the celebration of His coming that we ought to be jumping up and down with excitement.
Christmas time is a good time for us to put into practice the much -neglected virtue of Christian hospitality. The Lord knows, with all the parties and dinners and invitations we are receiving and sending, we will have ample opportunities to practice that virtue. Perhaps it is this virtue that is at the heart of so much of our Christmas traditions: Las Posadas, the Simbang Gabi Mass or the Misa Aguinaldo and even the caroling can all be a reflection of how the virtue of Christian hospitality contributes to the joy of this seasonal celebration!
I want to encourage you, as you go out to visit your family and friends, don’t approach that visit as just another get-together. Go in a spirit of prayer and greet one another with a holy kiss. Make a difference this year as you greet the presence of Jesus in your brothers and sisters, and as you bring them the presence of Jesus in you.
And from our home to yours, Merry Christmas!
God bless you all!