Advent and Christmas Message 2016

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” -John 1:14

Renowned Croatian-American theologian Miroslav Volf recently noted as he looked out at the social unease that seems to be so prevalent in the world “We are in a major crisis of legitimacy and trust. No better time to renew commitment to trustworthiness, as individuals and communities.” Numerous studies have shown that many of our basic institutions, whether governmental, private, or religious, are facing a crisis of credibility and trust. The result is a fraying of the fabric of our common life.

Now admittedly, bringing up such issues is unexpected in a reflection upon our celebration of the nativity of Christ Jesus. But our situation is not dissimilar to the era into which our Lord was born. In Christ God responded to the confusion, conflict, and crisis of the age by entering into the changes and chances of life. Jesus is the embodiment of divine faithfulness – trustworthiness, if you will – in our world. The birth of Jesus is the unbreakable sign that God will never forsake or abandon us. Christmas celebrates the birth of the One who theologian Karl Rahner called God’s irrevocable Word of hope, mercy, and redemption. It is in coming to worship him whose birth the angels sing that we discover true faithfulness in an uncertain world. And it is from him that we learn anew how we might be trustworthy in participating in God’s purposes for the sake of this divided world, ourselves speaking the irrevocable Word of God not only with our lips, but with our lives. 

Let us receive the faithfulness of God this Christmas in Jesus Christ our Lord. And in following him let us share in his trustworthiness for the Glory of the God and the healing of the world.

Grace and Peace,