THE BIRTH OF JESUS is now imminent. In a day’s time we will be celebrating the memory of that great event. We have been waiting: waiting for Christmas, some have been waiting for family to come home for the holidays, some for gifts, some cards: may be from special people. Some have been waiting for cold weather.

I am also waiting: waiting to go home for vacation, I am going home after 2 years. I will be gone from December 29 through January 31. I am confident that you will keep me in your daily prayers. I am thankful to each of you for your love and concern. Thank you for your cooperation and allowing me to go.

Today’s Mass prepares us for the Christmas celebration. Father Raguiel and I wish you a most wonderful and blessed Christmas with your families and friends. Thank you for your wonderful stewardship of the many gifts from God that you share with our communities and with the poor. I pray that you make room for Jesus, Mary and Joseph with great love.

You know, Divinity has become visible in the Word made flesh. In the face of Jesus, we see God’s face and live to tell about it. And even more wonderfully, we learn that the divine desire to share life and love culminates with “the pitching of his tent” by the Word of God among his people.

With the birth of Jesus, God inhabits the “tent” of human flesh, not in a place apart, but right in our midst as a person. God makes “grace upon grace” directly available to every single person.

Evangelist John wants us to know the deep intimacy of God’s love that is revealed to us by the “only Son” who is “in the bosom of the Father.” This divine intimacy is shared with all Jesus’ disciples. You and I make visible in every generation the face of God in human flesh.

Our Christmas celebration reminds us how blessed we are. As Francis de Sales reminds us: “Let us stay at our Savior’s feet, saying with the heavenly Bride: ‘I have found him whom my soul loves, I hold him and I will not let him go.’ “

May we live each day joyfully, as we manifest the Savior dwelling in our midst.