When you go in a store and see displays of Santa and his reindeers, do you wish as I do that we could put Christ back into Christmas? It can feel like the real message of Christmas gets lost in the hubbub of the holiday.
The birth of Jesus changed the world. He gave us the promise of ever-lasting life with Him in heaven by taking on our sins.
“Behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” ~ Luke 2:10
The importance of the birth of our Savior is a message we can spread. Pope Francis declared a Holy Year of Mercy beginning December 8, 2015 to November 20, 2016. He said it is “A time to heal, to help, to forgive.”
There are so many ways we can remind the people around us about the real meaning of Christmas and the Holy Year of Mercy. Here are some suggestions…
- Give an advent calendar to a child in your life
- Bring a friend or relative to Mass
- Purchase a gift for someone in need
- Give a caretaker a chance to rest and take care of themselves
- Call or visit a home-bound person
- Celebrate Posadas, a 9-day Mexican tradition re-enacting the trials Mary and Joseph experienced on their way to Bethlehem and honoring their sacrifices
- Share your Christmas dinner with someone who is alone this year
- Join us in prayer during Saint Ann’s Shrine’s Christmas Novena of Masses
- Send us your prayer intentions and the names of your loved ones. They will be remembered in our prayers and in our Christmas Novena
Loving, giving, and sharing is truly what the Christmas season is all about. After all, Jesus gave us the greatest gift of all. Let’s follow His example and open our hearts to others. Let’s do whatever we can to make other people’s lives better.
Good Saint Ann was a loving mother to Mary, and a loving grandmother to Jesus. She has so much love to share that she is always there for us, interceding on our behalf.
I would be most grateful if you can also give a Christmas gift to Saint Ann’s Shrine. Your gift helps us reach so many people with the message of Jesus’ love. The Fathers and Brothers of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament thank you for sharing in our ministry.
The Blessed Sacrament Fathers and Brothers and Saint Ann’s Shrine staff and volunteers wish you and your loved ones a joyful and holy Christmas season. May you experience health and happiness in the New Year!
Yours in Good Saint Ann,
Rev. Michael P. Norieka
Spiritual Director, SSS
P.S. Share your joy of Jesus’ birth through your prayers and actions this holiday season and throughout the Holy Year of Mercy!
“Mercy is the best thing we can feel. It changes the world.” ~ Pope Francis