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Sunday, December 24, 2006

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Fourth Sunday of Advent

Micah 5:1-4
Hebrews 10:5-10
Psalm 80
Luke 1:39-45

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"mary" christmas

"Therefore the Lord will give them up, until the time when she who is to give birth has borne." —Micah 5:2

The person who knows more about Christmas than anyone else is Mary. She was chosen from all time to give birth to Jesus. She was attached to Him by His umbilical cord. She, with Joseph, cut the cord, held the Baby Jesus to her breasts, nursed Him, wrapped Him in swaddling clothes, and laid Him in a manger (Lk 2:7).

Mary knows about Christmas in a way impossible for anyone else. Do you think you'll have Christmas this year? Very few had the first Christmas and it's questionable whether many more will celebrate the true Christmas this year. Yet the Lord would gladly send us Mary to guide us from materialism to the manger, from over-indulgence to gospel poverty, and from the pride of modern life (1 Jn 2:16, JB) to the little town of Bethlehem.

When Mary comes to visit you, let her guide you. At the sound of her greeting, be filled with the Holy Spirit of the true Christmas (Lk 1:41). Cry "out in a loud voice: 'Blest are you among women and blest is the Fruit of your womb. But who am I that the mother of my Lord should come to me?'" (Lk 1:42-43) "Mary" Christmas!

Prayer:  "O come, O come Emmanuel and ransom captive Israel."

Promise:  "By this 'will,' we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." —Heb 10:10

Praise:  "Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel because He has visited and ransomed His people" (Lk 1:68).

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on The Assumption of Mary on audio AV 81-1 or video V-81.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 13, 2006

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